I learned the value and power of sending thank you notes early in life.
A Lesson from Mom
When I was a young child, my parents occasionally went out with friends for dinner. Invariably, when my parents returned from an evening out, I saw my mother sit down at her little desk in the hallway as soon as she got home and begin to write.
One night I asked her what she was doing. Her answer came straight out of Emily Post: “We had such a wonderful time with our dear friends this evening that I want to jot them a note to thank them for their friendship and the wonderful dinner.”
My mother’s simple act of gratitude, expressed to people who already knew that she and my father appreciated and enjoyed their friendship, helped to keep my parents’ friendships strong for their entire lifetimes.
Having an Attitude of Gratitude
Because I understood that building relationships is what selling is all about, I began early in my career to send thank you notes to people. In fact, I set a goal to send ten thank you notes every day. That goal meant that I had to meet and get the contact information for at least ten people every day. I sent thank you notes to people I met briefly, people I showed properties to, people I talked with on the telephone, and people I actually helped to own new homes. I became a thank you note fool.
And guess what happened?
By the end of my third year in sales, my business was 98% by referral! The people I had expressed gratitude to were happy to send me new clients as a reward for making them feel appreciated and important.
How to Express Appreciation
I understand that you may not be comfortable at first with starting the Thank You note habit. The trick is to keep the notes short and simple. A thank you note is not a dissertation.
To help you get started (aka eliminate any excuses) I invested time writing out ten situations in which sending a Thank You note is appropriate. Then, to help you even more, I’ve drafted the notes for you. Use my words until writing thank you notes becomes so natural to you that you can dash one off in less than a minute.
Thank you notes - the scenario's:
- Telephone contact Thank you for talking with me. In today’s business world, time is precious. You can rest assured that I will always be respectful of the time you invest as we discuss the possibility of serving your needs.
- In Person Contact Thank you. It was a pleasure meeting you, and my thank you is for the time we shared. We have been fortunate to serve many happy clients, and it is my wish to some day be able to serve you.
- After Demonstration or Presentation Thank you for giving me the opportunity to discuss your upcoming needs with you. We would be honored to serve your needs now and into the future. We believe that quality, blended with excellent service, is the foundation for a successful business.
- After Purchase Thank you for giving me the opportunity to offer you our finest service. We are confident that you will be happy with your new ______. My goal is now to offer excellent follow-up service so you will have no reservations about referring others to me who have similar needs as yours.
- For a Referral Thank you for your kind referral of John and Mary Smith. You may rest assured that anyone you refer to me will receive the highest degree of professional service possible.
- After Final Refusal Thank you for taking your time to consider letting me serve you. It is with sincere regret that I was currently unable to assist you. However, if you need further information or have any questions, please feel free to call. I will be happy to keep you posted on new developments and changes that may benefit you.
- After They Buy From Someone Else Thank you for taking your time to consider our product and service. I regret being unable, at this time, to prove to you the benefits we have to offer. I will keep in touch with the hope that in the years ahead we will be able to do business.
- 8. After They Buy From Someone Else, But Offer to Give You Referrals Thank you for your gracious offer of giving me referrals. As we discussed, I am enclosing three of my business cards. I thank you in advance for placing them in the hands of three of your friends, acquaintances, or relatives that I might serve. I will keep in touch and be willing to render my services as needed.
- To Anyone Who Gives You Service Thank you. It is gratifying to meet someone dedicated to doing a good job. Your efforts are sincerely appreciated. If my company or I can serve you in any way, please don’t hesitate to call.
- Anniversary Thank You Thank you. It is with warm regards that I send this note to say hello and again, thanks for your past patronage. Please call me with any questions you have about your ________ or the latest advancements in our newer models.
Personally, I believe the hand-written note, posted in the mail is the most powerful. But, if that truly doesn’t work for you, it’s better to send the message via email than not at all. Ideally, you will get the note off within 24 hours of meeting with the people.
The power of expressed gratitude is immense. Put this tool to work for you today!
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About Tom Hopkins
Tom Hopkins, is world-renowned as an expert and authority on the subject of selling and a Faculty member at XTRAcredits. He has helped over four million students on five continents to enhance their careers and earn higher incomes through his proven-effective selling strategies. No theory here, Tom’s training is specifically “how-to” and “what to say.”