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A Valentine for Our Readers: Love Your Clients and Customers

Happy Valentine’s Day!  ❤️

If you forgot to get me chocolates, don’t worry. I accept truffles and candy year-round, and I never say no to flowers. (Thanks in advance!)

The way I see it, when it comes to V-Day, and when it comes to pretty much any special occasion, you can’t beat an old-school, handwritten note. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have slowly given way to mass-produced greeting cards. With the cards, a corporate copywriter has done your thinking for you. The sentiment might be right, but your special someone is essentially being wooed by a stranger.

Wait… where am I going with this?

Oh yeah…

GQ just published an interesting article by Cam Wolf about the menswear designer Billy Reid (pictured above). This line caught my eye:

He (Reid) has carved out a sustainable business doing what he knows best: fostering local community.

Fostering local community. Encouraging the people nearby. The non-strangers. The ones who should get handwritten notes.

A local ad is kinda like advertising’s version of a handwritten note. And if your local ad is next to a line about local community in a piece as good as Wolf’s in a magazine as respected and admired as GQ, talk about added value!

Quick segue, then I’m gonna tie it all together…

The notion – and dare I say “strategy” – of “loving your customers” can seem overdone these days. Or just plain phony. But it’s an unbeatable strategy when genuine. Years back, the Harvard Business Review did a profile of Joe Girard, who sold 13,000 cars over the course of 15 years. The cars – all 13,000 – were sold to individual car buyers. Girard is in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the world’s greatest salesman. From the Harvard profile, in his own words:

People are sick to death of sitting around in service departments. When I was selling cars, my right-hand man could go to the service department while the customer’s car was at the curb and get three or four mechanics to come right out with toolboxes and take care of the customer in 25 minutes. Sometimes they would install $15 or $20 worth of parts—a lot of money back then—and the customer would say, “How much do I owe you?”

“Nothing,” I’d say. “I love you. Just come back.”

You get service like that, where are you going to buy next time? That’s what makes businesses big: word of mouth. If you create it, it’ll make you. If you don’t, it’ll break you.

Partnering with MediaMax will get your local ad in front of the right prospects. Turning those prospects into customers who truly love you is easier when you love them first.

In the GQ piece, Billy Reid mentions his menswear customers “are looking for things that are sophisticated and ageless.”  Handwritten notes (local ads) in tasteful envelopes (Condé Nast magazines) are sophisticated and ageless to be sure.

Once again, Happy V-Day, and feel the love, baby!

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