Famous Last Words: Say Thank You!
Not only is it warm and fuzzy-as all thank-you notes should be-but it also followed a basic rule of direct marketing: Never send anything without making an offer.
In this case, 1-800-Flowers makes two offers-15 percent off on the next order and the opportunity to sign up for its Gift Reminder Program ("we will remind you of every upcoming special occasion in your life and provide appropriate gift suggestions").
Why is it imperative never to send anything without an offer?
1. If the person has no reason to respond, you will get no response and therefore have no idea whether the message was delivered.
2. With no offer, you have incurred a marketing cost without any hope of generating revenue.
In the case of this thank you, 1-800-Flowers is positioning itself to generate lots of additional revenue because busy people hate to forget special occasions, and busy people also are lazy. Remind a busy person of Mom's birthday, make it easy to order flowers and chances are you'll get the order.
In short, with no offer, your message is wasted.
Think of the smorgasbord of offers American Express could have made in its thank you to mark my 40th anniversary as a Cardmember-travel, merchandise, discount coupons at great restaurants and stores around the world. I get goose bumps thinking about it.
Roger Craver-America's premier liberal fundraiser and founder of Craver, Mathews, Smith & Co.-got it right: "Say thank you. It's the polite thing to do."
It also happens to be the smart thing to do.
Denny Hatch is a freelance direct marketing consultant and copywriter. Visit him at www.dennyhatch.com, or contact him via e-mail at email@example.com.