I recently was asked how I decide what to give away as my Thank You gift when someone buys beads. As I began answering I realized that it was kinda complicated. First of all, I consider what has been bought. Is the customer buying big beads? Small beads? Formed beads? Painted beads? If there seems to be a trend, I tend to include a bead or two from that trend.
Sometimes the beads I put in as thank you beads are beads that I have not put in my store, nor will ever put in my store. Why? It is not because they are not good beads, but usually they are beads that do not photograph well. For example, I have some beautiful coral beads, but no matter what lighting I put them in, they come out pinkish. Well they are not pink. And try as I might with the graphic program, I can’t make them come out their true color. Therefore, if I have what I call a “Fantasy Bead”, I will reserve them for a thank you gift. Many times they are my most beautiful beads… and because they don’t photograph well, completely unique!
Don’t get me wrong, indeed, there are times that I include beads that are already in my store or fresh out of the kiln that week. But what I never do is put in a bead for a Thank You gift that I am not pleased with. I mean, the point is to have the customer fall MORE in love with my beads, not OUT of love with them.
Years and years and years ago, the first time I ordered beads online I was a bit disappointed. They came in a dirty plastic bag, no invoice, the envelope had been used I don’t know how many times — the thank you gift looked like something small and broken out of a candy machine. The next time I ordered beads (a few years later), it was fantastic. The lady had packaged these beads so that it felt like Christmas morning. I oooh-ed and aaah-ed myself through each goodie layer and I never forgot how great that was to open up and gaze at those beautiful beads.
So I do take time to think about packaging and thank you gifts. I want to wow my customers. I buy soft fleece from the fabric store and pretty ribbon and I always use new plastic bags if the bag is scuffed up from being with the other bags.
How many beads do I give away as Thank You gifts? That depends on the size of the order. I try to be consistent. However, I probably should keep track of exactly what I’ve given and to whom, but I don’t — at least not yet.
The bottom line is that my customers and I each love beads and so I try to say Thank You the best way I know how — with a bead!