Off to the firing squad I go. Yes, I am guilty! I do not write enough thank you notes. A thank you note is so much more than sending a simple acknowledgement. George Bush 41 attributed his presidency to writing personal thank you notes. He would always write something special in the note that would let the recipient know it was personally written by him.
I was never taught how to write a proper thank you note. I just knew that I had better send my clients something even if they could not read my doctor's handwriting. Mailing a thank you note to a prospect who says "no" is a great touch. Rarely do sales reps send a note thanking them for their time even when they told them to hit the Klondike Trail, so to speak.
When my mother passed away a couple years ago, I received a personal note from a friend that "rose above the clutter." I decided to ask my friend, Shawn, for some tips on writing a proper thank you note.
In today's e-world, the younger generation does not realize the importance of the personalized letter. If time is of the essence, send the thank you electronically. If not, rise above the clutter and write those notes by hand. The handwritten thank you note is the best investment of a sales rep's time other than being in the field.
Here are Shawn's must do's on thank you notes plus an example.
Top 10 Tips For Thank You Notes
1. There is no such thing as writing too many thank you notes. No reason to send one to the same client every time.make it rise above the clutter and change it up once in a while with a "seeding letter."
2. Thank you notes are another form of "the first impression." Leave a good one. If the front of the letter looks shabby, what will they think when they open the letter? (Sean's note: When I started my own business, my mom addressed everything, so I knew the clients would at least open the note.)
3. Use good quality paper preferably printed with your name. Dress for success and write for success, also. If your station has thank you notes, use them. It is a good idea to invest in your own and mix it up a bit.
4. Handwrite the notes even if penmanship is poor like my friend Sean's.
5. Make sure to use the correct spelling (especially names), punctuation, and grammar. Learning how to write correctly is still a work in process for my friend Sean. Work on it, and send the note anyway.
6. Write the note on your laptop first. Save them as examples. No marked-out words or scribbles.
7. Ideally, send out the note within 24 hours of contact. Forty-eight hours at the latest.
8. Hand address the envelope and include a return address, also.
9. ALWAYS use a stamp, not the postage machine.
10. Do not abbreviate when addressing the envelope. Example: Street not St.
11. Properly address the person: "Miss" should be used for a woman who has not been married. "Mrs." and first name for married or widowed women. "Ms." if the marital status is unknown. Use "Mr." for a man.
12. Lick the back of that envelope. Then kiss it goodbye. The note always seems to find its proper home upon arrival with a lick and a kiss!
Thank you so much for the time that you spent with me on Monday. I enjoyed the sneak peak of the new addition to Flying R Western. Wow! Those extra square feet will really help display your new lines of boots and jeans.
I understand that you have already committed your marketing budget for 2013, but I would like to set up an appointment after your vacation to learn more about your business and see how KKDY could assist you in selling those new boots and jeans in 2014.
Happy trails on your Wyoming vacation! I will check back with you at the end of the month.
There you have it. the tips and an example of how to write a thank you note that will rise above the clutter. Now get to writing those thank you notes! Write them either after a sales call, or at the end of the day. No procrastinating! Otherwise, they will stack up and you will forget about them. Oh yes, thank you for taking the time to read this article.
As seen on Radio Ink Headlines June 17th, 2013