Years ago, email replaced the art of handwritten letter writing. Today, even email is falling by the wayside. We tweet, text and Snapchat to communicate with our friends, family and even business associates. No one takes the time to sit down and express themselves with more than 140 characters or a ten second video clip.
We have lost the art of the handwritten note.
Writing a handwritten note to someone; whether it’s an expression of appreciation, gratitude or just to say hello holds a lot of power. You have proven to the recipient that you care enough to set aside technology and focus on the words you’re putting on paper. Note: It’s hard to multi-task when writing a handwritten letter and people know this.
The handwritten letter writing doesn’t stop with just the actual writing. The writer has to look up an address, buy a stamp and either walk to the mailbox or drive to the post office to mail the letter or card. These are all steps that show the writer cares about the recipient. Effort!
Teaching this quickly fading expression to the next generation of millennials is important. When writing a thank you note, do it by hand. Typing on the computer doesn’t count. Hand writing it is the ultimate “Shout Out”. Be specific as to why you’re thankful. If it’s for a business prospect that you met with over coffee, talk about being appreciative that the person took time out of his or her busy schedule to meet with you. Then explain how you look forward to connecting with them again. This principle can be applied to other aspects of writing, not just thank you notes.
Your letters do not have to be novels. Short is sweet! Just a few paragraphs can mean the world to the person receiving it. Challenge yourself to write a handwritten note to your prospective customers as well as your current customers. Thank your current customers for being loyal customers. If you spoke with a current customer and they told you they were having a bad day, send her or him a handwritten note. It will not go unnoticed.
A handwritten note goes a long way. When I receive a handwritten notecard from one of our business vendors or from a friend or family member, I appreciate and remember it. Your prospects and current customers will too.
Here’s another fun suggestion: Write a handwritten note to our troops serving overseas or the men and women recovering here at home from injuries they’ve suffered while serving our country. Our military and veterans deserve our thanks and what better way to express that than by a hand-written notecard. Learn more at Operation Gratitude.