11 Ways to Say Thank You to Your Community Members
Whether they’re newly joined or people who have been with you since the beginning, you’re likely thankful to the members make up your online community. After all, they’re the meat and potatoes of your mission, and the reason why you created your business in the first place.
Taking the time to recognize those who help you succeed not only helps you strengthen your relationship with individual community members, but it can also help strengthen your community as a whole.
While receiving physical gifts can be fun and memorable, we’ve put together a list of eleven other ways to say thanks to your clients for their continued community engagement.
1. WRITE THEM A PERSONAL NOTE
Taking the time to write a heartfelt, handwritten note to a client is a seriously underused practice these days, and taking the time to do so can be extremely rewarding. Everyone loves receiving old-school mail! For a truly memorable gesture, make sure your message is specific, thoughtful and personal. It’s better to write fewer notes with more meaning than blasting out a large amount generic thank-you messages.
2. GO ABOVE AND BEYOND
Look at what you deliver to clients on a regular basis, and ask yourself how you can go the extra mile to be useful to them. What can you do to go out of your way to be helpful? Add on a one-time bonus service? Share information that can help them improve their situation with a fresh perspective? Whatever it is, keep it within your means, high-impact and valuable to your clients.
3. TEACH THEM SOMETHING NEW
The more your clients understand what you do and how you do it, the more they will value the work you do for them. Consider saying thank you by inviting your clients (or even your entire community) to a free webinar, workshop, expert interview, group coaching call or consultation. If you prefer something simpler, you could also share an exclusive whitepaper, case study, e-book or online training.
4. PLAN A SPECIAL EVENT
You can also invite community members to events that are more social than business related. Whether online or in-person, you can host a client appreciation event, networking hour, fireside chat, coffee date, shared mealtime, and more. These types of events help you and other leading members of your community get to know your members. Giving them the opportunity to put your face to a name will fosters a deeper sense of personal connection with your community members, and will help them get to know you on a more personal level.
5. SPOTLIGHT YOUR CLIENTS
Whenever a member of your community experiences a win that can be celebrated and shared, do so genuinely on channels like your blog, social media or your email newsletter. This can leave them delighted, feeling valued and happy to be doing business with you. It also has the added bonus of delivering a new opportunity for members to engage with one another. Combine this gesture with a handwritten note, and you may just make a client for life.
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6. MAKE A VIDEO
If your community is large and you want everyone to feel appreciated, nothing beats recording a video in which you deliver a heartfelt word of thanks. Don’t worry too much about going pro – your smartphone camera and decent natural lighting will work – focus on being sincere and genuine in your message.
7. DONATE IN THEIR NAME
Why not do double the good with your gesture of gratitude? Choose a cause that you and your community members care deeply about, and make a donation in their names. You can do this as a one-off gesture, or include a regular social giving component to your business.
8. DISCOUNT THEIR INVOICE
Who doesn’t love a surprise discount? Think of this gesture as sending your member a bonus. The trick here is to make sure you acknowledge the gesture. Along with the discount, include a short note of thanks for their continued membership, and WHY you are offering it at that time.
9. REWARD YOUR MOST LOYAL CUSTOMERS
If you prefer standardizing your gestures of thanks, consider starting a rewards program where clients can achieve specific rewards for specific levels of commitment. While this is much more formal and less spontaneous than the other gestures, it can also be very effective if done right.
10. SPONTANEOUS PHONE CALL
When you build a community online, most of your communication occurs using digital and text-based methods, such as email or community forums. Surprising a community member with a phone call is a great way to personalize that member’s experience, and gives you a chance to connect one-on-one through good old-fashioned conversation.
11. BRING IN AN OUTSIDE EXPERT
A great way to add extra value to your community is to bring in an outside expert. Who else is making waves in your industry? Conducting an interview, creating a video, or planning a special event with another professional who is well-known and respected in your community’s niche is not only a way of giving extra thanks to your community, but it is also an excellent way to spark new conversations and increase engagement.