I have no doubt that over the past few days or even weeks you have seen a substantial increase in the number of emails you are receiving from online retailers. They depend on your custom over Christmas and use the occasion as an excuse to send you even more messages in the name of goodwill and best wishes. Do you do the same to your members?
Christmas is the time for relationships
Regardless of the religious foundations of Christmas, it is widely regarded as a time when friends and family come together. People send well wishes to others they may not have even spoken with since last Christmas, all in the name of goodwill and seasons greetings. People like to receive such messages – it tells them that you remember them and value your relationship with them. You should mimic this with your online community.
Use the festive period to strengthen relationships
You should always use the Christmas period to strengthen the relationship you have with your members. At the very least you should post a new thread on your forum offering everyone your best wishes. Use the opportunity to thank your members for helping make your community a success – this will make them feel valued and will increase their site loyalty.
I sent every newsletter subscriber at Just Chat a Christmas ecard – not only does this show my members that I value them, it also brings our ecards section to their attention, resulting in many of them using a part of the site that they may not have otherwise used.
There was soon evidence to support my theory that members enjoy receiving such messages – within a couple of hours a member had started a ‘Thank you’ thread on the Just Chat message boards thanking all the Just Chat staff for the email postcard they received. Other members soon chipped in, creating a great ‘feel-good’ thread in the community.
I deliberately posted this article now to give you enough time to take action on my advice. Don’t let the advantages of Christmas sentiments pass you by – wish your members a great festive season and thank them for being a valued member of your community. The couple of minutes you invest in doing this will enable you to strengthen the relationship you have with your members, make them feel valued and encourage site loyalty.