Michelle Spalding: A simple thing to add into your day to connect deeper with your clients
Michelle Spalding is a multi-passionate entrepreneur, writer, and business alchemist. She launched her TC Business in 2005. As the founder of the TC Academy where she trains and coaches TCs, she says her favorite things is to help people spend more time doing the things they love. To learn more about the TC Academy or Michelle visit
I can’t quite recall when I started, only that I do it a lot now. Sending out notes, that is. One of my friends even went so far as to call me the “Note Card Queen”. My daughter Emily will often tell me to walk away from the stationary aisle in Target, as she knows how much I love it.
I think I made my first purchase of note cards on an innocent trip to the stationary store near my home long before I started a business 15 years ago. It was a fancy store that smelled like a cross between dried lavender and new paper. I’d admired the store from afar for a long time, never being able to pop in as they closed before I got home from work, and the idea of bringing young kids there on a Saturday never felt like a good one. Then, one spring evening there was an event with the small businesses and all of the shops in this area were open late for a special occasion. I loved just about everything in the store and wanted it all; only my budget said, “girl, you are out of your league, don’t touch anything.” I purchased a fifteen-dollar box of foil embossed floral note cards that had little stickers to seal the envelopes. I felt very sophisticated. There was a part of me who wanted to cherish these note cards and keep them all to myself. After all, the cards were exquisite, and yet, I knew they were destined for more action than a shelf in my home.
The following Saturday, I headed to the post office and picked up the prettiest stamps I could find to compliment my cards. The first one I sent out was to a friend who was under the weather, wishing her words of encouragement and a speedy recovery. I mailed another to a friend congratulating her on a recent job promotion. And another card I left on the desk of a colleague who needed a little pick me up who had experienced a particularly bad day with a client the day before.
Not only was each of the recipients getting something handwritten and personalized, which likely would catch them off guard, but they were also getting a little piece of my energy. I felt great sending out the note cards of love and people told me it brightened their day too.
I’ll be honest with you; it didn’t take long for me to be addicted to sending out cards. It was like each card I sent only made me want to send more.
Once I opened my business, I began to see the value in “snail mail” as it’s called there too. I sent out thank you notes to each person I spoke with over the phone about my services along with a note highlighting something they said to remind them that I cared. If I had a coffee date with someone I’d met from a networking event, I followed up on our visit with a note card.
How you may ask, did I get the cards to people I just met without asking them out right for their address? Why, thank you for asking – that is much easier than you may think. All told, it takes me just a few minutes to find someone’s address online. Often, their website will reveal it, or I’ll search their name in the county records to find out their home address. Now that Facebook is around, often, if the intended recipient has a business page, they also have an address there.
The way I see it is that it’s easy to send a text, and sure, that means something. It’s even easier to jump on the Happy Birthday bandwagon on Facebook. And while those things are all great –there is something about receiving something in the mail that just can’t be beaten. Each month I send out about 20-30 note cards, birthday cards, or other individually messaged cards.
Grace, a friend of mine, called one day. It had been a few weeks since we’d spoken, and I was happy to see her number show up on my phone. As I picked up the phone, she said through tears, “you have no idea how perfectly timed your note was.” I’d simply thought of her, jotted down something I wanted to say, and stuck it in the mailbox. The note arrived at her home, after a few challenging days and it shifted her mood at that moment. It made her feel loved, special, and she even went onto say it strengthened her faith in the magical way the Universe delivers just what you need when you need it most.
When my granddaughter, aka, the Grand Ginger Princess, came along, I began to mail notes to her along with little gifts. I found out from her parents that she loved the note cards more than she did the small gift. So, I kept sending out note cards, after all, what kid doesn’t like to receive mail personally addressed to them? Now, as I travel, I take the supplies with me to easily mail her note cards from the road. If I can find post cards from my travels, I send one of them too.
Word of caution when sending out note cards in your business – don’t make it feel smarmy. In other words, let the person know you care and want to develop a relationship with them. Please do not talk all about business, and how you wish for theirs – yuck! That isn’t relationship building. That is begging and even if you didn’t intend that when you’re sending out a card, it may be what the recipient feels when they receive it and thus, your efforts may backfire. Instead, mention something memorable that you discussed and leave it at that.
Final thoughts on this for business – every day, your ideal client has hundreds of marketing or advertising messages coming at them, often from companies with much deeper pockets than yours. If you want to stand out, do it by letting someone know you care. I believe our entire world could benefit from more caring and less marketing.
Next time you’re at Target, or your favorite local stationary store, pick up a pack or two. Grab some stamps and set about sending good vibes out. Not only does it have the potential to grow your business, but you’ll also be making someone smile by letting them know you care. And I ask you to consider, does it get much better than that?
- Michelle Spalding
www.TransactionCoordinatorAcademy.com | www.MichelleSpalding.com