Thanksgiving marks the start of a holiday season. A time for celebrating and sharing good cheer with loved ones. Whether near or far, we exchange gifts and gratitude to those who fill our lives with joy. Therefore, this season is an excellent time for professional photographers to say thank you to clients. Elevating your brand with customer appreciation will also help build relationships, keeps business owners grounded, and can open the door to new possibilities.
Saying Thank You
When saying thank you to a customer you are acknowledging their support of your business. There are many professional photographers out there, with a variety of different skill levels and price points. Therefore, customers choosing to work with you, using your expertise, and purchasing your professional wedding albums, are making a commitment to your enterprise.
Start off by thanking your customers from the moment they sign an agreement or contract. Wow them from the beginning and you’ll quickly put them at ease. Remember, a thank you can be a small action and it doesn’t have to cost you more than your C.O.D.B allows. Here are a few ways to thank clients at the beginning of your relationship.
- Send a copy of the contract by mail with a gift certificate for coffee or take-out.
- If you meet in person to finalize, do a selfie and post on social media for a public thanks.
- Gift and upgrade. Maybe you noticed them struggling between the 50 images or the 75-Image Luster Book. Gift them 10 extra images.
Helping You Grow
Acknowledging that you value a customer’s decision to work with you is more than just a marketing move. Yes, elevating your brand with customer appreciation can be a marketing strategy! Choosing to include customer delight in your product delivery can create conversations and referrals. However, showing gratitude towards your customers can also benefit you personally.
You are indebted to your clients. Without them, you would not have a business. Therefore, gratitude is a two-way street. You may be honored to work with all your clients but is the feeling reciprocal? It is important to evaluate your customer’s experience. Do you communicate well and consistently with your clients? Are you offering high-quality professional albums? Is your customer’s purchasing experience fun and exciting? Are you easy to work with? Do your customers feel that you listen and understand them?
After couples receive their wedding album, send out a thank you and quick customer survey. This can be a great time to learn from your clients. If there’s an opportunity to do better or to shine brighter, be grateful to gain this knowledge.
Get Creative with Gratitude
Gratitude can be shown in many ways. For instance, a simple handwritten thank you is an unexpected touchpoint. A special gift or bonus delivers a wow factor! There are many ways to creatively say thank you. Some gestures may be an investment, some may encourage sales, and others may simply be words of acknowledgment. Here are some ideas on how you can build on elevating your brand with customer appreciation.
- Send a personal note. A thank you card with a handwritten note is really a must for any client. Whether you include it with their wedding album or send it special delivery, it should be personalized. If you find yourself with writer’s block, check this out: How to write the perfect thank you.
- Offer a special bonus. Let’s say you are in the middle of helping a couple approve their wedding album design, and they are totally delighted. In fact, they are so happy that they refer your company to some newly engaged friends. Offer an extra spread or an album cover upgrade. A small investment on your part will mean a lot. It can also mean more referrals!
- Give a surprise gift. For couples who don’t choose an album with their package, gift them a small keepsake book. The Zookbinders EZ Book is a cost-effective way to share your work in printed format and is an unexpected surprise for your clients.
- Support a cause. A great way to show appreciation is to support or donate to a particular cause where your clients might be involved. Not only do you honor their philanthropy, but you also engage with a community. You could choose to donate your time, a raffle item, or simply make a small monetary donation.
- Share a compliment. Reach out to past clients to thank them for being a customer. Share compliments about something unique to their celebration and ask permission to write a post or blog about them. However, make sure the share is about them, rather than you, and that it comes from the heart.
Customer appreciation can be in the form of a personal gift or thoughtful touches throughout the customer experience. It’s a feel-good for your customers AND an opportunity for you to evaluate why you do what you do. Creating great imagery, offering unique wedding albums, getting recognition on social media, and earning an income are all part of the grind. Thankfulness can often be overlooked. In this season and especially during this year, being grateful for those who choose to work with us is truly a gift.
Zookbinders wishes all our friends and customers a very happy holiday season!