Recently, we’ve been working on behalf of a number of brands to build a new direct mail follow-up piece into their sales process and the results have been exceptional (on multiple levels).

In this article, I want to share exactly what we’re doing, the results this new campaign is generating and how you can build the same strategy into your business to delight your customers and make them extra “sticky” so that they will return time and time again.

But before we jump into the reasons why this campaign is so effective, let me give you the back-story of this case-study.

I can’t share who this client is (as we’re NDA’d up to our eyeballs) – but they’re a large online platform that have been involved in over three billion transactions over their short eight-year existence – an online brand that we’re all familiar with and many of us are customers of.

Prior to working with us, upon the completion of a first-time transaction, they used to send a small printed card to the customer that thanked them for their custom. On the footer of the card had their contact information with a message saying, “if you need any further help, then please contact us.”

They had 0.54% of recipients becoming repeat customers (via the contact information on the card) within 90 days of their first purchase.

It was highly effective and a lesson for us all. But we helped them push it one step further.

We built them a direct mail strategy that has not only boosted their response (as I’ll share in a minute) but is building them a reputation for delivering outstanding customer support and experience.

Here’s what we changed.

Rather than sending every first-time customer a printed card with the same “one size fits all” thank you message, we switched it around to send the customer a highly personal handwritten thank you card.

The handwritten card introduces their personal  “account manager” – it thanks them for their custom and says that if they have any questions or would like help with their next order, then to personally contact their account manager on the information provided.

The card was inserted into a small hand-addressed brown envelope and sent with a first class stamp.

This campaign now drives a 1.01% response (of first-time customers becoming repeat customers) within the first 90 days, which has increased their retention rate by a huge 87%.

It’s essentially doubled their first-time customer retention.

But that’s not all, as the bi-product of sending this campaign has also resulted in the “account manager” receiving a flood of “thank you” messages and a crazily positive response.

Recipients are posting images of their handwritten card across social media channels and it’s building the brands reputation for their incredible customer service and customer care.

All of this by simply switching to personal handwritten cards.

In my eyes, this approach is a no-brainer for most businesses (and it’s something we’ve built into our business).

Because when you break down the maths, it becomes simple.

In order to win a new client, you only have to pay for the marketing costs to acquire them ONCE, all repeat purchases after that are gravy.

It’s why many companies (including Amazon for many years) lost money on their first transaction because they know that the profit comes on your second, third and fourth transaction.

But for many businesses, after a customer’s first transaction, they sit on their hands, cross their fingers, maybe send them a handful of broadcast emails throughout the year and hope that the customer will buy again or return without doing anything proactive.

However, by simply investing a few pounds to deliver them a handwritten personal note that drives a % of them back to purchase and leaves the rest with a positive experience is a very smart place to invest your money.

In a world where consumers are making buying decisions based on convenience, building brand loyalty is one of the most effective strategies to retain customers and wildly increase profitability.

And the most effective way to build brand loyalty is by making your customers feel something special when they do business with you.

My advice to you. 

I’m not suggesting a handwritten thank you card is the best fit for everybody – if you sell £10.00 widgets that customers only buy once – then re-investing 30% of that to thank them is a waste of time.

But if you sell something of real value, and repeat customers are the lifeblood of your profit – then you must be proactive in order to get them to return and buy again.

It may be the case that a handwritten card is too little, and a bottle of champagne is the right investment (it depends on the value of return customers to you).

If you hire out private jets, with each transaction being worth £10,000 – then it’s likely that the person that makes their first purchase with you will likely be in the market for a jet again at some point in the near future – it’s worth every penny to make them feel delighted and build brand loyalty with you.

If you want help to build your own “experienced-based” handwritten follow-up campaign, then give us a call today on 01530 215071 or drop us a line here and we’ll have a natter.