Ok, gonna talk about the “old” days for a couple of minutes here. Remember when you actually wrote on a piece of paper, put it in an envelope, addressed it, put a stamp on it and then mailed it?
Now, pretend you are picking up your physical USPS mail. As you are sorting through the pile, you notice a handwritten envelope. You automatically put the rest of the mail down, investigate who the handwritten piece and immediately open it. Talk about an excellent marketing technique to get our attention.
Most of the handwritten envelopes that I have received in the past 2-3 years (other than holiday cards) have been thank you cards.
I speak and travel a good deal, so I always have my business cards ready to share with people that I meet. I am not comfortable handing over my phone to someone as they put their info into it. It may be a good way for you to get their information, however, a business card works really well for me.
On a plane in a “three across” seating, I always introduce myself. At least 50% of the time a conversation takes place. We share business cards. Depending on the length of the flight, we might share what we do for business. More often than not, people ask my advice on situations they are in that seem to not have a resolution. (I understand doctors have that happen to them often also – people open up to me as if we had known each other for years).
I am always surprised and pleased when I receive a “thank you” card from an airplane seat mate. I certainly don’t expect it. And I often send a “note” to my seat mate to tell them how much I enjoyed their company and conversation.
I believe and have seen the power of a hand written note. It is ALWAYS appropriate to send a note to someone who has stimulated; impressed; motivated; inspired you.
In fact, it will make their day. People love being reminded of their value to others.
Can you accomplish this depth of meaning electronically? Maybe. However, a well-placed and well timed note will enhance the time spent or the impression made. I remember when I actually got back a hand written note from Barbara Walters. She wrote to thank me for my lovely words of encouragement and how it had come to her at the exact time she needed it most.
Imagine that! I kept the card, by the way.
So will the people who receive your handwritten, self addressed piece of mail (or dropped on their desk).
Look in any scrapbook, memory book, jewelry box, for notes received from special people. Why do they same them? Because it felt good. They felt special. They knew someone was thinking of them. They felt loved. They felt listened to. They felt valued.
BAM. $.47 (retail $.50) buys a lot of feeling and power.
You can buy embossed personal note cards to use or you can get the $.99 pack at the discount store. The richness of the paper does not matter. It is the richness of the message always.
So what is the etiquette of business and personal communication accomplished with a handwritten card?
- Impressed that you cared enough to take the time to write
- Thankful that you remembered
- You are remembered by the person receiving the card
- Creating a lasting impression of being caring, classy and professional
- Understanding the power of the written word (however brief the amount of words written)
How many cards have you saved from people who remembered you?
Right. That is the point.
Blessings and love,