(Disclaimer: I can’t decide if this is so simple you will think I’ve wasted your time, or that you’ve heard this so many times you simply skip it. I hope not. While this could be classified as very basic, I hope it’s in some way useful.)
The other day I had a discussion with someone that wants to build her referral base for her loan business. I asked “what gesture do you make to thank your clients?” In short, the answer was nothing.
Thank you 1.0
I pointed out the amazing success of a mutual friend (loan officer) who thanks every one of her clients by having flowers delivered to them at their office the Monday following COE.
She keeps a stock of nice thank you cards, writes a very personal note that includes highlights (… so happy we were able to reduce your monthly payment by $xx – or – … so happy to help you buy your very first home! Financing these days is so tricky ….) and encloses 3 business cards and 3 brochures. If she was dealing with a husband and wife (or other combo of buyers) she sends each flowers – at work.
Genius of simplicity
Consider this: When someone at your office gets flowers (particularly women) people swarm wanting to know who sent them and why.
The result? Her clients proactively discussing her, most likely pointing out the highlights included in the handwritten note, plus they just happen to have her business card and brochure to hand out!
Why not cookies or a gift basket or wine? Longevity. The flowers last longer, and when delivered on a Monday will typically stay at the office the entire week. Yummy cookies, wine or other consumables will quickly be gobbled up, or go home with your client.
The longer the flowers are visible, the more likely they are to start a conversation that could result in a referral. Plus, for some reason flowers say “you’re special”.
According to my friend, through the years in addition to receiving referrals, she has been asked on numerous occasions to make office presentations, or stop by with more brochures.
While it takes additional time to drive to a florist and write the note by hand, she won’t sacrifice that level of personalization for the ease of ordering online.
Over the years she’s carefully cultivated a personal brand around “going the extra mile” and “highly personalized service” and this behavior demonstrates those traits even though the transaction is complete.
In addition, when she gets a referral, whether from an agent or a previous client, what do you think she does? Yep. She sends flowers thus starting the referral wheel spinning all over again.
One caveat to this would be a male agent sending flowers to a male client. Would that be awkward? If so, I suppose it could be from your “team”.
What’s the best thank you gift you’ve received from a service provider? And, what do you do to say thanks.