Posts in Customer Experience
45 Ways to make your customers and your tribe feel appreciated

The people you write for or make videos for. The people you sell your products to. The people on the other end. They’re inspired by you. They love what you sell. They listen to you. I know, because otherwise they wouldn’t be there.

If you’d like to make them feel appreciated, I hope you’ll find inspiration in my list below.

If I had to sum this list up, I’d say: be honest, be kind, be transparent and remember you’re an uplifter. Because you are. And we’re all ready to be uplifted by you.

  1. A thank you just because email

  2. Secret updates about a new product you’re working on

  3. A special section on your website only accessible to customers, where you post additional content from what’s visible to all visitors

  4. A behind the scenes video

  5. Dedicate a new product to a customer who inspired you

  6. Limited edition products just for elite customers

  7. Thank you handwritten cards

  8. Gifts that don’t have your company’s logo on them

  9. An event just for customers

  10. A virtual club

  11. Ask for your customers’ vote about something you’re working on (and show them how you’ve used their vote)

  12. A multi city tour to meet your customers

  13. Donate to a cause that’s important to your customers

  14. Fix people’s problems quickly and seamlessly

  15. Follow up with people who had an issue

  16. Answer people’s questions on social media

  17. Ask for people’s feedback and show them you used it

  18. A free product day, where everyone gets a free sample (inspired from Ben & Jerry’s “free cone” annual day)

  19. A free workshop on a topic valuable to your customers

  20. Give a shout out to special customers on social media and/or your other marketing messages

  21. Gather and share “customer stories” (ex. a newsletter with customer pictures and stories)

  22. Offer a surprise upgrade

  23. A “Happy One” card on the customer’s one year anniversary with your business

  24. A separate phone line just for customers (or just for VIP customers)

  25. Pop up (virtual or in person) week where “product experts” (i.e. stylists, engineers etc.) answer your customers’ questions

  26. Wish them happy birthday and offer a gift

  27. Give an unexpected reimbursement

  28. Respond personally to some customer inquiries

  29. Create a “year in review” for each customer

  30. Empower your employees to spontaneously do special things for your customers

  31. Create personalized products for some customers (inspired by Samsung

  32. A celebratory, thank you or get well card signed manually by your entire team

  33. Tshirts with your customers’ names on them

  34. A concierge service only for your VIP clients

  35. Jokes, mantras or words of inspiration customized with a customer’s details

  36. A special video message from your founder or team

  37. Different emails for customers (don’t just change the message, change the design too)

  38. A different package for repeat customers

  39. An AMA (ask me anything) day where your team is available all day to answer questions asked by your customers in real time online

  40. “How I built this” 100% honest and transparent training

  41. Celebrate your birthday with your customers

  42. Start an award for customers only

  43. Monthly digital art with things overheard in your tribe

  44. Gift books that inspired you in creating your product, content or business

  45. Say thank you to everyone who gives you a shout out on social media

How Zappos' kind gesture made a big difference

I get excited when I hear stories about people in companies going out of their way to create an unexpected experience for customers.

Most of the time they’re gestures that didn’t cost anything, like the story about Ritz Carlton and a little boy’s teddy bear, which I shared here.

Today’s story comes from Zappos. Read the whole story below right in the customer’s words, posted on Facebook:

God is so good and there are some awesome people in the world! After Christmas I ordered Brent a pair of shoes from Zappos and received the wrong pair. Fully prepared to return them in exchange for the right shoes, I called their customer service to let them know. I got to speak with an amazing customer service rep named Madison and explained to her our situation. After sincerely apologizing for the mix up she told me just to keep the shoes and she would send the correct pair overnight. What an awesome gesture! I told her about the flood we had here in South Carolina and how so many people have been effected, losing their homes and possessions, and promised I would give the shoes to someone in town that needed them. Today (as its continuing to pour down rain) the UPS truck pulled in and delivered a huge Zappos box. I nervously laughed at my husband as I swore that I had not ordered anything, then I noticed the box had a sticker on it that said Surprise! He opened the box and handed me the card that was on top and we both stared at the contents in shock. Madison and the team at Zappos sent a box of fleece blankets to help the continuing flood relief efforts in our area. Absolutely amazing! Thank you Zappos and Madison J and the rest of the Zappos team for being awesome and kind and giving, you have a Zappos customer for life! ‪#‎zappos‪#‎customerservice ‪#‎scflood


It pays off to genuinely care for customers, and to create unexpected moments, when you can, and when they make sense.

Some people think they couldn’t afford it. But I promise you that most companies pay much more than a box of fleece blankets to try to gain a customer’s loyalty.

Plus, think of all the new customers that Zappos acquired because of the fact that this one customer posted her story on Facebook. This post was shared 3,493 times. Let’s assume that each person who shared it had an average number of 50 friends who saw it. That means that this heartfelt story was seen by 3,493 x 50= 174,650 other people.

Most companies would have to spend a good amount of money to get that many people to see one of their ads, not to mention that cold traffic probably converts worse than traffic like this one.

That’s the power of loyalty. Not only does it bring more sales from loyal customers, but it also loops back into customer acquisition. This nice gesture helped Zappos earn the loyalty of a customer and get free advertising in front of 174,650 people. 

Not to mention that it also made this customer's day brighter, helped people in need, and allowed the team at Zappos to feel good about giving. Thank you Zappos for making a difference.