Innovation. Ideas. Insight.

Handwriting – The Power of Form and Function

In Insight on January 27, 2009 at 2:43 pm
A handwritten letter by Mohandas Gandhi is pictured at Christies Auction House in central London, 26 June 2007. The letter is a part of the 'Albin Schram Collection of Handwritten Manuscripts' that are to be auctioned at Christies in London, 03 July.  AFP PHOTO/LEON NEAL (Photo credit should read Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images)

A handwritten letter by Mohandas Gandhi is pictured at Christies Auction House in central London, 26 June 2007. The letter is a part of the 'Albin Schram Collection of Handwritten Manuscripts' that are to be auctioned at Christies in London, 03 July. (Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images)

Interesting piece today in the Boston Globe on the death of cursive handwriting. It is indeed a dying art and one that is becoming obsolete. PSFK weighs in here, throwing some additional dirt on the coffin.

But I think there is something valuable here for marketers to think about. A hand-written note is very powerful. It says a lot of things about the sender and to the recipient.  Many of these are accentuated further as the skill fades from practice.

Picture this: A prospective client receives a note from you. He opens it, and the following is written in your own hand:

“I’ve been thinking about your business lately.”

Not an email, not a voicemail, not a newsletter, not a CD, not a link to your blog.   A handwritten letter about them, not about your value-added, best-in-class, leading-edge enterprise software. About their pain points, not your synergistic, customizeable SEO solutions.  Five hundred words about them, and they’re not even your client.  I bet that letter stays around a lot longer than most things they receive that week. I bet they ask themselves, “when was the last time my agency head sent me a letter?”

Lesson: Sometimes the value of something increases as it becomes less widespread.

  1. Great post. There is power in adding a personal touch to your communication and as we all know life is in the details. Handwritten notes are a lost art because it can’t be automated, it takes some thought & planning and its not searchable by Google. It is the little things like handwritten notes, speaking to people in lower positions than you that can have a greater impact anything else.

  2. Perhaps the most powerful yet most overlooked advantage of a computer in developing writing skills is as a glorified typewriter. It allows an approach to teaching writing that is impossible with a pencil and paper, and may have its greatest impact in the earlier years of school.This is the first of a series of articles to explore the introduction of laptop computers in a kindergarten class.
    http://lllol.wordpress.com/

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: