Thank you is a global phenomenon for marketers

This post is by Anton Buchner, a senior consultant with TrinityP3. Anton is a lateral and innovative thinker with a passion for refocusing business teams and strategies; creating visionary, data driven communication plans; and making sense of a more complex digital marketing environment.

It’s a very powerful word – thankyou.

Use it as a noun (ie: a thankyou), when you want to give gratitude to someone who has made a difference in your life.

Use it as a heartfelt verb, thank you, when you want to thank someone directly. For example, I would like to thank you for reading this blog post.

Either way it can create a powerfully positive experience.

So why do so few marketers include it in their marketing strategy?

As an independent consultant, I see a lot of business leaders measuring and benchmarking their marketing activity. They have a report for everything: personal scorecards, business scorecards, customer satisfaction, customer engagement, net promoter scores, return on investment (ROI), media effectiveness, and the list goes on.

And when I ask what is their strategy to improve these measures, I’m generally met with a thick pile of documents and research reports and told, “this is our plan and the current benchmarks”.

After listening I tend to sit back and ask one simple question that stops them in their tracks:

Have you ever thanked your customers and analysed the result?

Thank you image

People love to be thanked and we know that it creates a powerfully positive experience. So why not thank your customers at critical points in their customer journey?

I was working on a Tier 1 global financial services client earlier this year and asked them the same question. After a few weeks of consultancy we had developed a new digital and customer lifecycle plan that also incorporated key ‘thank you’ points.

 How to go about it?

  • thank all new customers for becoming a customer. It’s common courtesy.
  • thank people (including business people) for their first critical action within your product or service lifecycle. A critical action may be a first use of a B2B payment terminal, or a first e-commerce transaction, or an event attendance.
  • then have a look at all the touchpoints that a customer has throughout the lifecycle of your product or service and identify the ones that mean the most to customers. Thank them at these points.
  • thank people for reaching milestones based on their tenure and value to your business.
  • thank people for helping your business reach a certain size, as well as great unit sales, revenue, or softer milestones.
  • thank people for just being engaged with your business.
  • thank people for negative feedback and do something about it. It shows that you are listening.
  • thank people for positive feedback and utilise it for advocacy.

These are just a few of the ways you can start to develop a ‘thank-you’ strategy. Hopefully you can build on them.

It’s also relatively low cost and will generate incredible returns. Measure it and prove it for your business.

So I’d like to thank you again for reading this post, and encourage you to go forth and plan your thank yous!

I would be interested to hear your thoughts on a “thank you” strategy. Leave a comment to let me know.

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About Anton Buchner

Anton is one of Australian's leading customer engagement consultants. With an eye for discovering greater marketing value and a love for listening to what customers are really saying about a brand. Anton has helped take global and local businesses including Microsoft, Nestlé, P&G, Gloria Jean's, Foxtel and American Express amongst others to the next level. Check out Anton's full bio here
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6 Responses to Thank you is a global phenomenon for marketers

  1. Anton, thank you thank you thank you for posting this blog. What a logical, seemingly obvious point you make, but as with many 'obvious' things in life, unless they are highlighted they can easily be overlooked. "Thank you" seems to be an underused word in society today full stop – personally i'm hearing less of it as people get busier and take so much for granted. But as you say, it's so powerful and it makes people feel SO good. Therefore, utlising these powerful two words in marketing strategies would seem like a no brainer. I look forward to seeing more of it from marketers as a result…you may have just started a thank you revolution!

  2. Anton says:

    Thank you Anita. You have made my day too. Thank you. It is simple, and can change our emotional state so quickly. In a super charged digital world, Marketers (and all humans for that matter) tend to get buried in short term requests and an instant, always-on demand state. It’s time to helicopter back up and lead from the front foot. Carry it with you and help spread the revolution :)

  3. Michal Hicks says:

    I'm guilty. While my offerings of 'thanks' are peppered through the working day, I'm guilty of insincerity at times. And I know the recipient can feel it too. Maybe we've become desensitised and cynical of giving and receiving gratitude? Should we give as much gratitude as we want to receive? Is it an equal force? As of today, and after reading this post I'm determined to act on my sincerity. Even if recipients don't give as much as I intend to give, at least I'll be taking action. First up, stakeholder xmas appreciation list. A thousand thankyous Anton (I really mean it).

  4. Anton says:

    Nice one Michal. Don’t expect equality. Lead the way though and the others will follow. And if they don’t they’re probably not the business people or customers that will value you/your offering.

  5. Rick Allen says:

    In a world where "customer engagement", "building a relationship" "surprise and delight" and similar buzzwords abound it is nice to see a simple and insightful view expressed well. Thanks Anton.
    I have worked both agency and client side over many years and I know that good suppliers really do go a to extra effort for clients who express sincere gratitude. Most customers will react simialrly protively in the same way.
    I do know of a telco who conducted and measured results for a Thanks program- a much improved retention rate and very strong ROI.

  6. Anton says:

    Thank you for your comment Rick. “Sincerity” is a great word. Not many people in business really understand it let alone apply it on a day to day level. Sounds like you’ve got it nailed!

Comments are closed.