Have you ever NOT opened a handwritten envelope?
In an era of mail-sorts, automated addressing and bulk postage, it might seem like the time and energy needed for handwritten mail might be a complete waste for a small business owner – but it’s actually one of your secret weapons.
A little over a year ago I started sending out handwritten thank you notes, something short – often just a postcard – to everyone I got a business card from. Then I noticed a puzzling problem: a lot of people don’t include their mailing addresses on their business cards! *gasp!*
I was at a quandary. Should I just throw away all those letters I wrote (about 65%!) for the big conference or should I email everyone and ask for their address like some sort of stalker?
The answer: neither.
Instead I emailed a high-resolution scan of those notes and emailed the file with a short note about how I believe in the personal touch. I mailed the ones I had real addresses for via proper snail mail.
The result: Tons of thank your responses, even people printing out the file so they can pin it at their desk! Even a year later, at the recent UYB conference, people I hadn’t seen since last year remembered me and spoke of me with high praise because of these letters. Here are just a few of the responses:
“Lovely note Celia! Thank you! Boundless energy my dear. I just read a few of your blog posts and they are really great Celia! Beautifully crafted.”
“Wow, what a wonderful note! Thank you so much, I’m really honored that you took the time to do that.”
“What an incredibly touching email to open!! Your handwritten note made my day….such an awesome touch. “
“It was great seeing you, too. Next time we need to have an actual conversation!! Keep shining your light!!”
“Thank you so much for the note. It made my day! I like handwritten notes myself and yours to me is priceless. It’s a print-er out-er for sure!”
“Thanks, Celia! Great to meet you. Love your work online here. Looks fabulous! I’m sure you will be very successful! Take care & please stay in touch. ”
These have created open relationships where we can communicate and continue to foster good will between us. Maybe they will need me, maybe not. Maybe they’ll know someone who needs my help. Maybe they’ll just become a really good friend. Who knows? We win either way!
What’s more, I’ve had people hold onto and treasure the notes they get in the mail, post pictures of the notes on Facebook (I may have doodled on a couple), and find my business card from my mailed note eight months later as some sort of ‘divine providence’ before giving me a call.
There is a great power in handwriting. It connects you with the person, makes them feel important to you (which of course they are!). Now, do I recommend writing 70+ notes in a single go? Probably not unless you’re really feeling frisky with a pen and some paper. But could you do 5 a week? Could you hire someone with nice handwriting to do it for you?
Don’t let this powerful secret-weapon of all small business owners gather dust in your marketing tool kit.
Take advantage of your amazing ability to connect with your prospects.
Have you used handwriting in your marketing?
What were your results? What do you find works best for you?