When customers choose small businesses over big corporations, they’re doing it for one thing: the personal touch. Small businesses are easily poised to give a more personal customer experience than bigger businesses, but how do they do it? Whether your business is big or small, it doesn’t take much to make your branding personal. Give the personal touch in your business with these tips and tricks for any business.
Why Does the Personal Touch Matter in Business?
Whether you’re looking to personalize your customer experience or just want to improve your marketing, the personal touch can be powerful for building lasting connections with your customers. But why do those connections matter so much? Does your relationship with your customer really start and end at checkout? Here are a few reasons to be more personal with your business.
- Customers shop with their instincts: Gut instinct drives a vast majority of customer purchases. Sure, they do research into the best products, but when they find two great options, they’ll follow their heart. If they feel more personally connected to one brand over the other, you can guess which one they’ll shop with.
- A personal touch helps you stand out: Despite the power a personal touch offers, a lot of businesses don’t incorporate it into their branding. When you become more personal with your customers, you stand out from the competition as a brand with heart behind it.
- Connections build customer loyalty: Would you ignore one bad shopping experience? What about if it was with a friend? Customers who feel connected to a brand are much more loyal and forgiving of one-time incidents or higher prices.
- A personal touch builds trust: Especially with small businesses or online brands, trust is essential for making sales. Anonymity increases distrust, and customers don’t want to give their money to just anyone. When customers feel a personal connection with your brand, they trust that you have their best interests at heart.
How to Personalize Your Customer Experience
Ready to add a personal touch to your customer experience? It’s not as hard as you think. Building customer connections should feel natural for both you and your customers, and a little can go a long way. Here are a few ways to bring that personal touch to your every day interactions and build those connections that last.
- Say thanks: Whether it’s a thank-you note in your packaging or an email with a coupon, showing gratitude is a quick and sure way to appeal directly to the heart of your customers. When customers feel appreciated and wanted, they are much more likely to become return buyers.
- Be friendly: There’s a reason companies like Walmart have greeters at the door. Customers respond well to brands that come off as friendly and welcoming, especially if it’s someone they will be interacting with regularly. When interacting with customers, be cheerful, welcoming, and ready to help.
- Be transparent: Stay top of mind and show that you’re aware of their needs by giving customers updates on order progress, and give behind-the-scenes insights (where appropriate) into the process of fulfilling their purchases. Show the people behind the purchase.
- Collect data and use it: Customer data is a valuable asset that every business should be using. There are lots of options for tracking customer purchase behaviors, and knowing their purchase habits with your business can help you learn how better to meet their needs.
- Share sentiments: Celebrate birthdays and holidays with your customers. Something as simple as a Christmas card or birthday card with a discount can go a long way to showing that you care.
- Offer a custom experience: Customers have different needs that are hard to predict, so let them do the heavy lifting. Offer a login where they can build a profile, customize their searches, and more. This will also give you access to more customer data for better customer experiences.
Want to learn more about how to enhance your customer experience? Check out our other blog post all about customer service tips for small businesses.
How to Add the Personal Touch to Marketing
Customer purchases are not your only chance to make customer connections. Everywhere your brand appears is a chance to make an impression on your customers. With a little effort and a lot of heart, your customers can make connections with your brand long before their first purchase. Here are a few ways to share your brand in a more personal way for customer relationships that last.
- Show your company’s heart: What got your business started? What keeps it going? What are your goals? Your values? Put some heart and personality into your brand so customers have something to connect to.
- Show the people behind the product: Include advertisements that give behind-the-scenes insights (where appropriate) into the people that keep your business running. As the customers see their faces and hear their stories, they will feel motivated to help your brand reach its goals.
- Incorporate in-person marketing: Door-to-door sales and pop-up sales booths may seem like dying arts in this digital world, but many customers crave human interaction when learning about a business.
- Be present in your community: Is your brand visible at local fundraisers and community events? Customers who feel your brand is a part of their community are more likely to seek out business with you.
- Be charitable: A fundraising event or limited-time profit share with local charities can go a long way in showing that you are invested in your community’s wellbeing.
- Hold gratitude events: We already know customers like to feel appreciated, so take the time to thank them all with gratitude sales events catered to them.
Personalized Products for Promotions
Gifts are a great way to make your customer interactions personal, but how do you choose the right gift to make the most impact? We recommend choosing gifts that will be used regularly and reminds your customers of your brand. When placed right, your brand will feel right at home in their lives. Here are a few of our personalized product suggestions that work for just about any brand.
Not only do reusable totes cut down on single-use waste, but they’re a great chance to bring your brand into your customer’s everyday lives. Shopping totes can be used for shopping, day trips, work commutes, and more. You can share these at checkout or send them as a personalized gift to encourage shoppers to come again.
Everyone loves a shiny gift, and a fancy new pen is no exception. Complementary custom pens are a great gift for any occasion, whether you’re sending them with in-person sales reps or passing them out at your next customer-centric event. Customize with your logo and a thank-you inscription for the maximum personal touch.
Whether you sell drinks or are just handing out beverages for an event, you’re wasting a major opportunity if you’re not branding your drinkware. Strengthen your message by printing (or even laser engraving) it on custom drinkware your customers can take home and use again and again.
As the world becomes more distant and digital, a personal touch becomes more important than ever to customers. Your business has a heart, good people, and strong values that drive it, so make sure your customers can see it! Don’t be a stranger to your customers, learn how to use the personal touch in your business so you can build long-lasting relationships with your audience.