One of my favorite branding and customer service accessories is thank yous! I absolutely love giving thank you notes and gift bags to clients. I’ve been known to drop random gift cards in the mail to my mentees. Why? We all need a little gratitude in our lives. Without your clients there would be no business. You’d be a person with a camera plugging away at a computer instead of making your art. Don’t forget to grab this week’s HB Photo code from monday’s blog post on packaging!
I come from a town where everybody knows everybody. Growing up, I always said I was going to get out and live in the city. And now I live happily in a town of just 8,000 people. So much for the city plans right? But I’ve realized small town life is the life for me. So when I opened my doors in October 2010, I decided I wanted to keep the small town feel as a major part of my business. My brand is rustic, laid back, natural, personal. Part of why people come to see me is they know they’ll be treated like family. When I see a client’s child in the newspaper, I break out my scissors, cut that sucker out and stick in the mail to them.
Each client gets a hand delivered (when possible) welcome packet. My thank you notes are hand written. My local graduating senior clients received custom cupcakes this year. The personal touch is so much a part of what my business is, I can’t see ever changing that. Many of my clients are high school senior girls. I just started, with 2013 seniors, gifting welcome bags when they arrive at their session. What is included in the bags changes with the weather and what’s on sale. In the cooler months, I’d put a Starbucks gift card in there. Now that it’s 100 degrees here in VA, they get a Tropical Smoothie card. There’s a mix of items they can use before or after their session. I wait until the nail polish or lotion I like goes on sale, and I go and stock up. Each hand stamped burlap bag ( there’s that natural branding again!) cost me less than $10 to fill up, but the value my clients see it in is worth so much more. Before you think I leave people out, I take care of my senior guys and family clients too! My guys get a local gift card, and for my family clients, I give the kids a little treat at the end of each session (usually bubbles and a sucker).