The Advantages of Handwritten NotesHave you ever had your car broken into? Perhaps you’re on your way to work, and you walk up to your car only to see your window shattered, your things rifled through…. It’s scary, stressful, and can take a lot of time, energy, and money to fix.

That very situation happened to one of our clients last year. In addition to maintaining the Ruby blog, I also update our Twitter account and various social media channels. When I was scrolling through our stream and noticed one of our clients tweet that his car was broken into, I knew he must’ve had a rough day and wanted to do something for him. I could’ve tweeted as Ruby, but I wanted to wish him well personally; a surprise notecard would do the trick! I wasn’t expecting to hear back but hoped it would make his day a bit brighter when he got it.

A few days later, our CEO, Jill Nelson forwards an email to the team. I scanned it, smiling as I read a few compliments about our welcome package, and then I got to this part:

“Today, I got a handwritten card with condolences for my car being broken into. Now how would you know that? Well, I assume folks at your office are tracking social media, and saw my tweet about it. It’s awesome that you know what your clients are up to, but even more awesome when you interact in their lives in a meaningful, memorable way.

I don’t know if this is all part of a calculated strategy, more of an improvisation, or a combination of the two…but either way, it works. Kudos to you and the fantastic people you hire.”

Wow! Reading that absolutely made my day.

Cut to a staff meeting a few weeks later, Sarah, our Director of Culture, starts retelling the story to everyone in the company, and I walk up to receive a “Core Values in Action” award for Creating Community with that client. It now hangs on my cube wall, reminding me how much happiness a simple notecard can bring.

But the story doesn’t end there. Since then, that client, Shawn Busse with Portland marketing firm Kinesis Inc., has been featured on our blog in a Client Spotlight; he agreed to give us a testimonial in our video; and he has mentioned Ruby in several blog posts of his own, including one about the benefits of an exceptional customer experience!

Next time you’re looking through your Twitter stream and a client mentions that they’re having a bad day (or it’s their birthday or they just got promoted…), take a moment and drop a card in the mail. It can be a powerful gesture!