Marketing with “Gratitude”
As fall begins to draw near, although not so noticeable in Florida, I tend to think of cooler weather, leaves falling, and Thanksgiving. For some reason, fall seems to be a time when people appear less rushed and in some cases, more grateful about things.
Over the years, I have observed that when one has an attitude of gratitude, as I like to call it, oftentimes that person is successful both in life and in business. The reason those with a thankful and/or happy disposition stand out is probably due to the fact that society seems to fixate on the negative. After all, bad news travels faster than good news, so-to-speak. Of course, you will always have some who would prefer to dwell on the negative, as the saying goes, “Misery loves company.” In contrast, those who are positive are refreshing to be around. This same outlook applies to companies who show appreciation to their customers. Truly satisfied customers will return and will refer their friends and family. And as any good salesperson knows: referrals are like gold.
Not long ago, a new strategy in business emerged; it’s called “Gratitude Marketing®” or “Appreciation Marketing.®” One might say, what exactly is it? Well, according to Mike Sciortino, who wrote a book on the very subject and trademarked the words “Gratitude Marketing,®” had this to say, “Traditional Marketing speaks at people. Gratitude Marketing® engages and connects with people. When you combine relationship-building with consistent nurturing, you create clients for life.” Clearly, understanding the needs of your customers, even if prices are slightly higher at your company, can go a long way to keeping them as well as earning referral business..
The idea behind marketing with gratitude is to serve others, and by serving others, then, you are served. American Poet, Ralph Waldo Emerson, had the same idea when he penned, “It is one of the most beautiful compensations of life that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.” Clearly, most of us, as individuals, would subscribe to the Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” However, what about companies? The successful ones apply that principal on a daily basis. For instance, years ago, I heard Truett Cathy, founder of Chick-fil-A®, attribute his company’s success to a core principal, “Treat others the same way that you would like to be treated.” Cathy knew that this concept was critical to succeeding in business. In fact, when he died in 2014, Chick-fil-A’s net worth was $5.5 Billion, according to Bloomberg.com.
There are many businesses today that recognize how important it is to provide excellent customer service. Firms such as Publix Supermarkets incorporate the service idea into their motto, “Where shopping is a pleasure.” Other companies engage in hand-written notes, gifts, and personal phone call follow-up to communicate their readiness to serve their clients. Whatever a business does to go the extra mile, without resorting to electronic communication, customers will take notice. One final thing, showing thankfulness or appreciation, seems to stimulate others to do the same. Why not give it a try – who knows? Your personal relationships as well as your business may grow!