Customer Birthdays and Your Brand

Our company, as you may or may not know, is full of people who celebrate March birthdays. One of my favorite phenomenons to witness around my birthday is the bout of emails I receive from brands wishing me a happy birthday.

Happy Birthday Customer wishes

This year, among other emails, I received birthday wishes from my eye doctor whom I haven’t seen in a year. I received a number of birthday wishes from brands that included detailed messages like….happy birthday!

I’ll admit, I was somewhat confused by these generous wishes. Don’t you mean “Happy Birthday and here is 5% off, I wondered?

While I typically espouse a hands-on customer service approach that includes hand-written letters and copious thank yous, the birthday wishes always baffle me a bit. Every time I open a birthday email from a brand, I expect there to be a small birthday token – a gift, if you will. This may be a remnant from when I used to get a free ice cream cone at Baskin Robbins for my birthday – but the selfish truth is, I still sort of expect brands to offer something more than just an email wishing me happy birthday.

Each of these brands did stick out in my mind for having sent those emails. Perhaps for that alone, it’s worth the time and cost for them to set up birthday emails to each of their customers. It really is a nice gesture. It just happens to also be a gesture that leaves me with a craving for a free ice cream cone.

More than anything, I’m curious: do you appreciate it when a brand wishes you happy birthday? How does your organization handle client birthdays?

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