A recognition gift that “wows” can be free

Few businesses these days give more than expected. Sadly, most seem to underwhelm. That’s why it’s natural to want to call out someone who provides exceptional service. Whether it’s through a direct thanks or a client referral, it makes us feel good to offer a recognition gift to those who have impressed us with how they care.

Sure, you could whip out an email or post on social media, but that’s usually old news and forgotten by dinner time. Here’s what’s amazing: you can provide something that’s truly memorable and useful for not much more time and maybe a $1.

Stop making it about you

Quit thinking about (and writing about) your experience from the “I” perspective and shift to making it about the recipient. This will not only cause them to feel great and provide something they’re thrilled to share, but it will also improve your writing skills. Plus, with the shift from the “me” mindset, you’ll learn to be a better observer and a more compelling communicator. That will serve you in leadership roles, marketing, team building, and selling.

It’s normal when you write a thank you note to make it all about you. It’s usually a message that recognizes someone for what they did for you. What if, instead, you made it all about them? This becomes a special gift. It also creates the most powerful kind of testimonial.

conformity quote relating to thought recognition gifts

What is it that this person does that makes them a super provider? Can you tell a story in a sentence or two that illustrates how they did this for you? Are there particular characteristics about how they work that separates them from the rest? How did they change your mood or life?

When you give thanks with this kind of thinking, your message becomes incredibly powerful, memorable, and unusual. Anyone receiving such a thoughtful note will appreciate it long after it’s read the first time. In fact, this is a treasure likely to be saved.

Take an extra moment for a more memorable recognition gift

Instead of shooting this off as an email, text, or online platform comment, consider instead pulling out piece of stationary or a card (you can buy printed thank you cards in bulk at six for $1). Handwrite the message. Put a stamp on it and run it through the USPS. That has a lot of wow factor.

Isn’t it worth a little extra effort to let someone who went out their way to make you feel good feel good too? Putting your name to it (and permission to use what you say) adds a super marketing tool. That’s the kind of gift money can’t buy. That $1 or so you spent will be priceless to the recipient.

Thanks to Shawna Schuh for planting the seed of this idea in one of her brief Q-Day Questions posts.

Oh, and by the way, feel free to share this with someone who might wish to send you a testimonial. Well written kudos from others provide fantastic social proof in your marketing efforts. It’s a lot more powerful with permission to use their name, so it makes sense to reach out and ask. The worst they’ll say is no. But what if the say yes?

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