Valentine’s Day is most often associated with giddy young lovers or committed couples professing their love and affection, often making the rest of us cringe and roll our eyes. But candy hearts and flower bouquets aside, everyone loves to know that they’re appreciated, especially when it’s an unexpected and meaningful gesture.
This year more than ever, showing your customers genuine appreciation should be baked into everything you do—from the emails you send and customer service interactions to providing help beyond the sale simply because it’s the right thing to do.
Whether you work in digital goods, e-commerce, or B2B services, Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity to thank your customers for their business and loyalty throughout a particularly tough year, and in the process, turn those customers into long-term brand advocates.
Here are three simple ways to show your customers some love this Valentine’s Day.
1) Engage by offering genuine support. Don’t be cheesy with corny cards or gimmicky gifts—find ways to show your customers genuine, value-added support by offering something that’s legitimately useful or relevant
For example, retailers could send a holiday-specific discount code or include a personal, hand-written note with each order. Knowing that there’s a real person packing and shipping the product makes it feel more personalized. Follow-up with a personalized email after the sale with an additional discount offer can keep customers coming back.
For a B2B brand, sharing valuable free resources like an e-book, infographic or how-to collateral is a great way to show you appreciate customers and are invested in their success. Consider offering a free webinar that helps them address a particular pain point with applicable advice or solutions.
2) Show customers what to expect by speaking their’ love language.
Taking a customer-centric approach in everything you do is essential for making sure they know how important they are to your business and that their success is important to you.
Whether it’s acts of service, giving gifts, or words of affirmation, speak your customers’ love language by providing something that’s meaningful to them, not just to you.
Using extreme personalization tactics post-sale, such as sending personalized thank you notes or asking for individualized customer feedback, let them know that you value their relationship and their input. This sort of deep connection puts you in a better position to engage customers on a more intimate level, and it can turn first-time customers into brand evangelists. Not to mention, customer feedback is critical for informing future product roadmaps, and creating this culture of stakeholder feedback not only gives you a starting point for ideas but also, when you incorporate your customers’ ideas into your products, it makes them feel personally invested.
With so many seasonal events still taking place online and the giant uptick in digital transactions, companies are in a great position to collect buyer data, such as purchase history, email and customer location, to send follow-up communications.
3) Empower them and their business. One of the best ways to show appreciation is to support your customers’ growth strategies. A fitness apparel retailer, for example, might share a 10-minute yoga flow or a heart-pumping HIIT workout to encourage customers to make self-care a priority for Valentine’s Day.
Here at ActiveCampaign, we wanted to do something meaningful for our 130,000 customers this year, so we launched a Customer Matchmaking Program for Valentine’s Day. The program pairs customers whose company values and startup stories align with each other to facilitate mutual mentorship opportunities, bonding, and brainstorming between our global small business customers. Our goal is to build a community of support that can help advance and elevate us all.
While customer appreciation should always be top of mind for any business, taking an opportunity around a special holiday to amplify the gratitude can solidify a loyal relationship Just remember to speak to your customers in their love language, focusing on what they might want or need, to make sure it’s a genuine expression and not a cheesy or thinly-veiled sales tactic.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dutta Satadip, Chief Customer Officer, ActiveCampaign
Dutta is a tech industry veteran, thought leader, and keynote speaker who specializes in customer strategy, customer acquisition, customer retention, and scaling operations.
At Pinterest and Google, he built organizations that engage customers to scale and profitability.
Dutta has more than 20 years of industry experience and has held various senior leadership roles in most key operating areas, including Pre-Sales, Business Operations, Product Strategy, Product Management, Product Marketing, Engineering as well as Consulting positions. He specializes in transforming organizations by identifying the right strategic levers to drive the business while minimizing risk. Dutta has operated extensively in both developed and emerging countries.