As part of our outreach and relationship building I often send personalised thank you’s to people who’ve gone out of their way to help us. Note the emphasis is on personalised. Below i’ll share some easy, quick and convenient ways you can do this even if the person lives miles away from you.
People’s time is valuable and when they use it helping us I want them to know it’s really appreciated. If they’ve thought about us and included us in a feature article or recommended our web design services to someone I want them to know it’s appreciated. These kinds of help and endorsements are priceless in business (and life!).
Whilst it can often be better to say thank you in person by taking them out for lunch, drinks, social occasion etc that’s not easy when you’re separated by distance.
It’s also great to reciprocate by showing genuine thought for them in return like referring them business or setting up a meaningful introduction but it might take time for that opportunity to present itself.
In the meantime there are some great little ways to say thank you in a personal way until you get the chance to say thanks in person.
Remember that your gesture will illustrate how much you appreciate what that person did for you. Don’t be the lazy uncle who sticks £5 in a birthday card and thinks the person opening it will be really excited. They won’t. That’s just lazy BS.
Make an effort. Make it personal. Make sure they know you are genuinely grateful or you’re just throwing money away (and you might also want to check yourself for being an ungrateful tosser ).
1. Spotify – Give the gift of music
You’re probably already familiar with, or have heard of, Spotify – a digital music service that gives you access to millions of songs.
Everyone loves music in some shape or form and Spotify’s the perfect way to give someone access to more music than ever before and the ability to access it from anywhere from loads of devices.
Don’t worry if they already have a Spotify account. They can just redeem the voucher and won’t have to pay for the service for a while.
The service has recently been made available in the US making this option even better than before!
You can’t customise the gift card design but you can add a short personal message to accompany it.
How to personalise this gift
If you already have a Spotify account you can go the extra mile by creating a playlist of the recipients favourite songs or new ones you think they might enjoy. (You’ll obviously already know what music they like having paid attention to them using social channels ) If you don’t have an account find someone who does and get them to compile it for you.
- Click ‘New Playlist’ on the left column inside the Spotify app
- Fill your playlist with music you know they’ll love
- Right click on the playlist and choose ‘Copy HTTP Link’. Send that link to the recipient. Done!
You can also add friends to your Spotify account making it a great way to keep in touch with them in the future.
2. Amazon – Give the gift of everything
Most people use Amazon for physical items now and again as they sell so much and stuff is often so heavily discounted it’s amazing. Obviously if they have a Kindle that opens up even more options.
You can buy gift cards on Amazon.com even if you have a UK account allowing you to send the card in $ and also allowing you to highlight specific products on the US site (see below). I don’t know if this works for US accounts on the UK site.
You can give any amount you like on Amazon. There’s 2 ways you can personalise an Amazon gift card
How to personalise this gift – Option 1
This option let’s you send a gift card to someone whilst suggesting an item they might like to spend it on. They can use the money to buy anything at all but it shows you’ve given it some thought and demonstrated you know their likes and dislikes.
This is my favourite option of the 2 but unfortunately it’s only available on Amazon.com and not on Amazon.co.uk
To do this option click on ‘Gift Cards’ in the header then choose “eGift an item: Include a product suggestion” as per screenshot below.
You will then see an option to ‘Pick an item’
You can then navigate to the item on Amazon you want to recommend and select it. It will automatically use the price of the item as the amount to send the person on your gift card but you can change it.
You can also add your short personalised message. This is a nice thing to hit someone’s inbox from you:
How to personalise this gift – Option 2
If you can’t spend the time picking out an item or you’re sending it to the UK then you can just “E-mail a gift certificate” instead.
But instead of using one of the default designs choose the “Upload your photo” option. Click “Browse” and select your photo/image.
You should make your image 350px x 225px. If you’re a company rather than an individual you might want to get a branded design rather than using a personal photo.
If you include text on your image consider using a handwriting font for a more personal feel.
Here’s our company one for example:
3. Starbucks – Give the gift of caffeine
Even if Starbucks isn’t your favourite coffee shop with the sheer volume of them around it’s inevitable you end up in one from time to time. It’s also great because they are in both the UK and the US.
The thing I love about these gift cards is the code can be transferred onto the Starbucks mobile phone apps letting you just use your iPhone for example to pay. No need to carry the actual gift card around with you!
Minimum spend is £5/$5
Gift cards are usable across all participating countries regardless of where you purchased it. These include UK, USA, Canada, Thailand, Australia, Hong Kong, Mexico, and the Republic of Ireland.
If you buy one on the US site you can send it as an e-card but on the UK site the gift card gets posted out.
How to personalise this gift
Unfortunately you cannot choose your own card design which is a shame. You can add a short personalised message so you could include the reason for the card and mention their favourite coffee & accompanying snack you hope they enjoy or a time you know they might need it (You’ll need this when your over in September to combat jetlag! Hopefully get a chance to meet you then too?)
There’s obviously thousands of personalised ways you can say thank you so there’s really just no excuse to be lazy.
There’s loads of places that do personalised gift cards like Amazon and Ebay which let you add your own picture to the card. You could upload a photo of your team holding up a thanks sign or just have a branded design made.
You could buy the person a specific app (£0.69) or a film from iTunes.
You don’t even need to spend any money and sometimes that might even be better or more appropriate. You can fire off emails to your contact list advertising their services, write a testimonial for them, offer advertising space on your site and so on.
Any great ideas you can suggest or ways you implement small interim ‘thank yous’ differently from the above?