I recently attended a training event about marketing. One of the things the facilitator stressed was connecting with your customers regularly. She said this: The one who shows up the most sells the most. She suggested a short weekly email and a monthly mailed newsletter. Now, since The Pampered Chef offers a fantastic e-newsletter, I figure that will do for my longer, monthly communication. I got to thinking about a weekly email. The HO offers those customer connection emails. One of them is blank, so it's easy to add your own content. I plan to share recipes, general food tips, and such, then use the sales/booking/recruiting ones they offer every six weeks or so. I sent an email out to every one of the people who receive my e-newsletter, inviting them to sign up for the weekly blast. In just 48 hours I had a couple dozen people who wanted to get that. Sent my first one out last Monday. It was just one of the PC recipes I'd copied and pasted into the email. Then, I got to thinking about the paper thing. I used to send out my own monthly newsletter before I signed onto the e-newsletter. At that time I also offered a paper newsletter to those who didn't have/use email. When I stopped I was sending out 53. I decided I could easily grab some of the info from the e-newsletter and print that out for my USPS customers. So, I sent out another invitation. This one was in print. I explained that I had decided to start back up with my printed newsletter. If they want to receive it they'll have to contact me; I gave them several options for doing that. Those went out yesterday. Finally, I discovered that one of the men at the meeting sends out half-birthday cards. For example, this month he sent cards out to every client whose birthday is in November. I think that's brilliant. It's a way to stand out. I get oodles of cards/emails from businesses on or near my birthday (which happens to be in November), but very few in May. I have had a birthday club for a couple of years. People sign up on Birthday Alarm, and BA reminds me when their birthdays are coming up. I've been sending happy birthday emails to those people. I printed out that list and put their birthdays in CC. I have a SendOutCards (SOC) account, so I created a half-birthday postcard. I've set it up to send out cards on the first of the month. I've already added May and June contacts (those whose birthdays are in November and December). The May cards should go out tomorrow. I also sent out an email today to all of my past hosts. I told them I was updating my files and asked for their birthdays. In just a few hours I've added over a dozen birthdays to CC. Each month I will check for half-birthdays by printing out a list of birthdays for the corresponding month. I'll update my SOC contacts and arrange for those cards to be sent. I also plan to ask each host at closing for his/her birthday, so I can automatically add those. I'm feeling very productive. Actually, I feel like I'm getting a bit of a head start on NC. Now, PC is my main job. I realize that this might not work for those doing PC alongside a full-time job. Still, you might find something in this that you want to add.