Going paperless is a laudable goal. In fact, the majority of the time you should pick electronic or face to face communication when possible. However, there is something wonderfully tactile about opening an envelope, unfolding a handwritten letter, even flipping over a postcard to read the message after looking at the picture.
Handwritten messages are a great way to reach people at a personal level. They can also be used as a bit of a secret weapon in the business world. If you want to stand out as a salesperson, job candidate, even woo potential investors, keep reading.
The Appeal of Handwritten Notes
People enjoy receiving hand written communication. Here are just a few of the reasons why:
- The Handwritten Letter is Undoubtedly Not Spam
- Receiving a Letter or Card in The Mail Among Bills And Junk Mail is a Real Mood Booster
- They Make The Sender Stand Out Among Texts And Emails
- A Card or Post Card Act as a Simple Gift; It Isn’t Intrusive And Doesn’t Create Obligation
- It’s Easy to Include a Business Card or Other Item With a Letter
- It Shows a Genuine Interest And Effort
- You Can Send a Card or Handwritten Letter Without Having The Recipient’s Email
When to Use Handwritten Notes
When should you use a handwritten note? Here are just a few opportunities:
Responding to Potential Clients or Customers
If a customer or client responds to your initial contact with a ‘not now maybe later’ response, consider sending them a handwritten card or letter with your business card. Thank them for their consideration, and offer to be of assistance in the future.
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Yes, you should email a note of thanks after an interview. Consider enhancing it with a short, handwritten note. It won’t help if you are completely out of the running, but it could improve your position if you are on the short list.
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As a Thanks For Help Given
Has someone referred you to a great client, recommended you for a job, or simply written some content that you found to be valuable. Put a note of thanks in the mail.
Building Relationships With Influencers
You attend a conference and are blown away with one of the presenters. You want to build a relationship with them. Of course, you start following them on social media and subscribe to their blog. Consider sending them a note of thanks for their great presentation as well.
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When You Shouldn’t Send a Handwritten Note
As great as they are, there are times when handwritten notes should be avoided. For example, if you have been given explicit instructions on how to communicate with the recipient, don’t ignore those instructions in favor of handwritten communication. There is a lot of bad advice about this aimed at job seekers in particular. You won’t stand out if you send in your resume with a handwritten cover letter. You’ll just annoy the hiring manager who is obligated to follow certain protocol.
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You should also avoid sending handwritten communications if receiving such puts the recipient in a compromising position. Remember that some professions require that a certain distance be maintained.