We're all searching for a little more joy in our lives these days. We're going on a year of being stuck at home, and if you're anything like me, you've received way too many FedEx deliveries to count. And while I can't count them all, some deliveries stick out in my mind. It wasn't the contents of the package that left an impression (though my wine subscription was a joy of 2020!), but rather, it was that extra oomph that some brands put into their experience. As I like to call it, the "surprise and delight" that a brand brought me.
In this day and age when we're receiving everything to our doors. How do you create a memorable experience for your consumer? When you're missing the opportunity to connect with them one-on-one and make their days, it's hard to leave a lasting impression with someone—one that drives sales and has them coming back again and again.
Here are three inexpensive ways you can surprise and delight your customers.
A Handwritten Note
Whether you're running an online store or you're a service provider meeting with customers daily, a handwritten note is one of the simplest forms of communication that goes a long way. Taking two minutes (yes, that's how long it takes) to write a customer and thank them for their time, purchase, or even their support is a sure way to reach their heart.
Handwritten notes can take on a lot of different forms. If you're running an online shop, slip a simple note into your packages thanking the customer for their order. Name the specific products in your writing so they know you took extra care to confirm the order was correct. If you're providing a service and meet with a potential new client, slip a handwritten thank you note in the mail the following day. Let them know you appreciate their time.
Sending thanks to a customer? Give them the opportunity to pass along the gratitude! Create a branded thank you note that you send to your customer, then include a blank version that they can share with a friend.
Do you know how many brown boxes I received on my doorstep this year? I don't. It's a number I can't even begin to fathom. Yes, getting mail is exciting, but after a while, opening the same cardboard boxes over and over again leaves me feeling a little sad. It makes me miss talking to a shop owner in person and hearing about their day. I miss the experience of touching products in a store.
To remedy this, consider investing in custom packaging. And before you say "Yikes! That's so expensive!" here are some inexpensive ways to make bulk packaging your own:
- Slap a sticker on the box
- Seal the box with branded tape
- Add brand-colored crinkle paper to the shipping box
- Throw in a thank you note (yes, again)
- Include some handouts about your product
- Get a rubber stamp and stamp a few spots on the box
Think about your brand values—what's important to you? If you're as woke as you say you are, explore eco-friendly packaging.
Recently, I ordered donuts. I don't even like donuts, but that's another story. I ordered a mystery pack of 6 donuts and low and behold—do you know how many donuts were in that box? 7! SEVEN DONUTS! Do you know why there were 7 donuts? Because the bakery had extra donuts and they needed to do something with them.
Throw in the 7th donut. Maybe your 7th donut is as simple as a sticker, or maybe it's a pink pouch that I can store my infinite amount of cords in (shout out to Girlfriend for gifting me that in my last shipment). Maybe it's a sample of your latest product to give them a taste of what's to come. Regardless of what your 7th Donut is—know that it doesn't have to be big. It doesn't have to break the bank. It just has to give your customer a sense of "Wow, that was nice of them!"
This isn't really a freebie, but if someone posts about your product on Instagram and raves about it to their friend, share the post on your Stories or at the very least, send them a message of thanks. Let them know you're listening.
Surprise & delight is something we could all use some more of. Whether they're reading your handwriting or devouring that 7th donut, your customer will be wowed by any extra effort you make to connect with them. That personal touch means so much in our society right now, so go above and beyond (or even just spend 2 extra minutes) to bring some joy to someone today.