There’s no question that customers are the driving force behind your business, but any good businessperson knows that the relationship with a client should last far beyond the initial sale or interaction.
Former customers are not only future customers, they’re the most important source of new customers you’ll ever have. That’s why wining and dining them every once in a while after you’ve gotten their business makes good business sense.
There are all kinds of ways your brand could throw a customer appreciation party –– cocktail parties, happy hours, in-store events –– but here are a few ideas that you should keep in mind no matter what type of event you are planning.
Personalize the invite
By all means you should send out an invite through email, and post it on all of your social media accounts. But in the age of mass messaging, an online invitation doesn’t always convince somebody that they’re truly wanted at a party. To make it more personal, you should follow up with a phone call or direct message to let them know that you’d love to see them at the party. In other words, try to make them feel special. Reaching out to customers individually and emphasizing your desire to see them always goes a long way.
Get your affiliate network involved
Parties for customers are a great opportunity to get affiliates involved. Partnering with your affiliates is a chance to combine customer bases and get in front of an audience you haven’t tapped into yet. But just as important, it reduces your costs because you can get your affiliates to help pay for the party!
Give them a plus one (or two)
Encourage your customers to bring friends along. After all, there’s no better way to get new customers than through existing ones.
Fancy works. But so does casual.
A cocktail hour featuring catered hors d’oeuvres is good, but so is a summer barbecue with burgers, hot dogs and ice cold beverages. The food is appreciated, but it’s not the main reason people are attending the event, so don’t stress out too much about it.
It’s only appropriate that you at least say “Hi” to the people you invited to the party. You’re the host and they expect to at least spend a few moments conversing with you. Similarly, they’ll understand that, because you’re the host, you can’t spend the whole time talking to them. It would also be ideal to remember something about the customer and their relationship with your business; but, nonetheless, a little bit of time spent with each guest truly goes a long way.
About Sam Lauron: Sam Lauron is a Communications Associate at Manzer Communications. She supports clients with digital marketing, social media, blogging and tech PR activities. Manzer Communications provides digital PR and marketing services in Austin, Denver and Houston and for any national brands seeking rapid, sustained growth. Some of the services provided include content marketing, social media strategy and ad buys, email marketing, and media relations.