How to Keep Your Business Top-of-Mind with Your Customers


This post will show you how to create customer loyalty and lots of referrals.

One great way to keep in contact with your customers on a monthly basis is to send them a post card with a special message. You can send them any kind of short tidbit of information (and who could use them):

  • Energy Saving Tips (insulation, roofing, HVAC, siding, & heating oil companies)
  • Cost Cutting Tips (office supplies & office cleaning)
  • (Clean) Silly Jokes
  • Organization Tips
  • Insurance Savings Tips (insurance brokers, auto dealers, realtors)
  • Financial Tips (financial planners, banks, accountants)
  • Home Improvement Tips (realtors, hardware store, handyman)

How to use the post card:

1. Get some brightly colored 2-up (two to a page) Avery postcards from your local office supply store.

2. A template is usually included on a CD with the postcards. If not, download an MS Word template from:

3. Create a post card similar to this:





4. Mail the postcard to your customer list. You are getting your customer’s contact information … aren’t you? Don’t worry. I’ve got a post planned to help with that too.

This post card will serve two purposes.

  1. It will serve as a monthly contact with your customer (good will).
  2. Your customer will pass the card along to a friend (referrals).

The customer receiving the card will get the chance to win a prize, and the referral gets a chance to save on your product or service. When the new referral brings in the card, your current customer’s name is on the card, so just enter them in the contest!

Now next month, you’ll be sending your new customer a card just like this one. Wash, rinse, repeat.

UPDATE (1/21/09)

download this zip file with articles about  saving energy

CASE STUDY: Cut The Pork From Your Budget


Client: Cost Control Associates
Objective: Creative trade show giveaway that ties in to their business.

I had a client, about ten years ago, that was getting ready to go to a trade show. They audit utility and telecom bills for businesses and governments to determine if there have been any overcharges. If they find any errors, they negotiate with the utility for a refund, and receive a portion of the refund it as a fee.

They had rented a booth at a trade show for governments and non-profit organizations, and needed some help. I suggested they convey the message that they could save their clients money and do it in a clever and memorable way.

We decided on a drawing for a prize. I suggested that they purchase a large ceramic Piggy Bank, with a slot big enough for business cards. Then I had them call our local specialty butcher to find an appropriate selection of “Pork” products that they could purchase and have delivered via FedEx to the winner of the drawing. They made a sign for their booth explaining the drawing, and that to enter, the attendee only had to drop his business card in the big pig.

When the show was over, they packed up and went home. With a giant ceramic pig full of prospects! They chose a winner and called them to get their preferred mailing address. They then proceeded to send an information packet to all of the people on those business cards. They followed up a week later with a phone call. Do you think that got any response? You bet it did!

In addition to the drawing, they handed out small plastic Piggy Banks with their logo and contact information. Over the years, attendees have come back to their booth again and again, because they are the guys with the pigs. They still order 1,000 piggy banks every year.

Promotional Product cost: about $.70

Need some promotional product ideas? Click the Need an idea? link at the top of the page.

How to Make Your Restaurant Memorable

Image Courtesy of
Image Courtesy of

Are you a Dirty John’s virgin?

We have a local restaurant called New Way Lunch. They sell hot dogs. Not your regular hot dogs. These hot dogs stink. I mean really stink. They will smell up your vehicle for a few days. If you bring them back to the office, everyone knows what you’re having for lunch. But they taste awesome. And the taste stays in your mouth for the rest of the day.

New Way has been open for for about 75 years. The original owner, whose name was John, worked all the time and his clothes were always covered in food. So the restaurant has been informally called “Dirty John’s”. And the special sauce they put on the hot dogs is made and kept in a pot that sits on the grill all day long.

So everyone in town has to go and get their “Dirt Dogs”, or “Dirt Sticks”, or just plain “Dirts”. I have several relatives who have moved out of town, who, when coming back to town, have to stop at Dirty John’s before they even come to visit. How’s that for loyalty?

Another local restaurant, Antonio’s Pizza Place has cool names for all of his Pizzas:

  • The B.C. – Chicken and Bacon live in harmony in this fantastic pizza
  • The Don Ho – Fresh Ham & Pineapple
  • The 70’s – Three blends of the world’s best cheeses
  • The Paleface – All white no sauce pizza delight
  • The Ciaciotta – Large superstuffed pizza filled with lots of meats and cheeses
  • The Old McDonald – Spinach, chicken, mushroom, and ricotta cheese (no sauce)
  • The Enrico Fermmi  – Spicy hot Peppers, bleu cheese dressing, mozzarella cheese, and Enrico’s famous “Atomic” sauce
  • The Bulls Eye – Ranch dressing, tomatoes, spinach, and mushrooms
  • The BarBCutie – BBQ sauce, chicken, and onions

Now, when you’re on your way home, thinking of what to have for dinner, you think to yourself, “I could really go for a Don Ho!”. When you think of a Don Ho, you think of Antonio’s, don’t you? You can’t get a Don Ho from Pizza Hut, only Antonio’s.

Now think of some funky cool names for your dishes. Make them memorable. Customers will associate the funky name of the dish with your restaurant, and no one elses.

Free Advice to Help You Market Your Local Business