Today is my birthday! Please send your congratulations
Today is my birthday! Please send your congratulations

Today is my birthday! Please send your congratulations

Today is my birthday. Looking at the number of emails and mailings I have received throughout the last couple of days, I have never been more popular than today. Don’t you want to send some congratulations as well? You might come short in the competition for my favor if you will not!

Obviously it is not only me who is receiving tons of congratulations. I should feel tickled about so much attention I get. But strangely enough I don’t have that feeling. It even feels a bit like being cheated, as for many of the congratulations I have the gut feeling that I am not the only one who gets exactly the same wishes.

Since personalized marketing has become a big thing, everyone wants to show to me that they can provide a personalized experience to me. The birthday mailing is the most simple channel thereby, as the only “knowledge” required is my birthday. But this is odd to me. It is not personal if you know my birthday. You know it as well now as you read the title of this article!

Congratulations from “business partner” have arrived side by side with the best wishes from members of my family, my best friends friends, and my fellows at work. Even though they were easy to identify as they did not have that personal touch. They simply miss out to be personal.

Personalization starts from appreciation, which cannot be managed by a CRM system or a social media contact only. All companies, business partners, friends out there – irrespective if I am your customer or not – if you want to get my attention you have to start to be more creative in the future.

Be more creative in how you say thank you.

Most of the mailing are not personalized. Messages and vouchers are created to cover all customers or contacts in the same way. But I was surprised about getting a voucher for my favourite coffee. I also liked to be recognized as mid-ager and family guy with its specific needs and plans. Congratulations can become more personal, if I recognize that someone was having some thoughts about how he says thank you.

Be more creative in when you say thank you.

Instead of making use of my birthday, show intimacy by celebrating an event, which is of relevance for you and me. The first contact. The first transaction. These are anniversaries of relevance. “We have your record in our systems since 2 years – this is our personal anniversary” is a better message than “It is your birthday and here is a reminder to get back to us to do some business”.

Be more creative in why you say thank you.

If I am your customer, express your interest in having me. If there is an honest interest in deepening our relation, the message should highlight this. Obfuscating the real reason for getting back to me will become a boomerang as soon as I find out that the congratulations are for your benefit while you pretend it is about me.

Over the next years I will become even more popular. There are still many stores and people I am in contact with, who did not send any congratulations to me. Many of them will want to catch up. But if you want to deepen the relation, don’t make this an odd event but show to me that it is of relevance. I trust in those who will find the way!