Don’t overthink how you connect and help develop community with people, especially your online community. This is a card I received in the mail today from Artbeats, a company that sells royalty-free video footage. I’ve written about them before on Twitter and Facebook when they were giving away free weekly video clips last year.
Unlike most cards, it wasn’t a preprinted message. It was handwritten by one of Artbeats’ employees, thanking me for picking up a piece of footage that was insanely cheap and asked me if I enjoyed using the footage and to provide them with any feedback, with the letter writer’s card inside.
Now I know they might have people writing these cards every so often to customers, but to hit me up with a personal note, someone who might only pick up one or two pieces of video a year, depending on how much cash I have to spend, that gave me a warm fuzzy the rest of the afternoon. And someone who has never spoken with an Artbeats rep on the phone, much less ever met one face to face.
And something else it did was help convince me that when I finally start shooting my first documentary, any budget we get for extra footage might end up in their bank account.
People too often end up forgetting about the small things that touch people. Writing this card might have taken a few minutes more than sending out a quick email or hitting me up on Twitter, but you know something? This handwritten note made an impact on me, more than any email or Facebook hit. Don’t put too much thought into how to reach potential customers only online, sometimes something as simple as a note will have more of an impact.