Showing Appreciation for Referring Parties

Was your outgoing mail tray full this past Valentine’s Day? Did you have bundles of cards going out for Easter?
These were perfect days to let others who have helped you in your business or nonprofit know you appreciate them.
It goes without saying you remember your clients, of course! But do you also thank vendors, key staff members, and the most important — referring friends?
Often, we say thanks when someone lends us a hand, but don’t go an extra mile to really show appreciation that tells them just how much they’re valued personally.

Referrals are priceless

Value it is: There can be no price put on beneficial referrals from friends, or other development officers — and especially from those outside your normal circle.
Maybe their help was introductions to others whose network worked for you. The ripple effect can be wide.
Take a moment to assess: Where have your clients come from? Check your files and note those who have had a hand in big events in advancing your organization.
Make a special note of those who have paved the way for you and your team to easily forge a relationship.

Gifts mean more than just a thank-you

Remember them with a small gift — a handwritten note is a must, of course. It’s the thought and heartfelt sentiment that counts. A special holiday card, a specialty food or soap, or a favorite book are appropriate token gifts.
I also like to keep a stack of gift cards available to include with a card — small ones for coffee or gas for those who do a lot of errand work and keep your organization moving, movie passes or restaurant cards for those who might enjoy a night out. Concert or sports tickets can be sent to those who have introduced you to a VIP client.

Also consider special gifts

At Southern Philanthropy, Brenda D. Jessup of Brenda Starr’s Gourmet Goodies created a very special treat for us: an incredible heart-shaped, gourmet cake for Valentine’s Day delivery. (Thank you, Brenda!) Recipients commented how thrilled they were to receive it, and will remember it for some time to come.
Simply put, the people key to my business (and income) know they are loved and appreciated.

Ben’s Takeaway: “It’s a quick and simple gesture to send a card or note to show appreciation for those who help out your organization with no strings. Keep cards and small token gifts on hand for just such a situation.”

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