The fact of the matter is, most of us love sweets. Despite our best efforts, we just can’t help ourselves. Cookies? Cake? Brownies? Macarons? Tartlets? Yes, please! There’s a reason why the term “sweet tooth” exists, but not “veggie tooth.” It’s innate, unfortunately, for us to love a little bit of sweetness in our life.
Cookies are Just Good Business
And well, companies know this. While I was in Chicago visiting Stephanie a couple of weekends ago, we walked out of a chocolate store that we had just enjoyed. And at that exact same moment an employee from the store put a cake platter of chocolate chip cookies out into their window display. The immediate reaction we saw, was nothing short of amazing. We literally saw her putting it in the window, and within seconds saw and heard about 10 people who happened to be walking by say, “Ooh, look at those cookies” and then walked right in the door. One after another, after another. And I know cookies are powerful. But goodness, that was fast, and shocking – even to me, who has little control over my own sweet tooth.
This same sweet strategy was used for a new parent orientation at Weston’s school the other day. They sent out an invitation to all new parents and shared that they were hosting a luncheon where they would be serving a complementary meal, and then followed it up with “(and cake!)” because again, sweets are powerful – and bring people in. And I’m not embarrassed to admit that while I was probably going to go anyways, hearing that cake was going to be served, was what actually pushed me over the edge and ensured my RSVP.
How Do You Get Cookies to Work for You?
So, how can you apply this sweet and simple idea with your design firm? Well, if you have a retail store that’s located in an area with a lot of foot traffic, it’s pretty obvious. Get some high quality baked goods from a local bakery and put them in the window. It doesn’t have to be every day as that could be pricey, you could pick one day a week and mention it on a window sign of yours (and make sure to include a picture of an example of what will be served as that really starts to entice people).
Set them out every Friday afternoon (or whatever day has the most foot traffic), or maybe even just the first Friday evening of the month, host a “wine and design” happy hour with sweets and wine (just make sure you look into your local liquor laws first if you serve alcohol). Whatever day, and whatever frequency, just try it out, and see if you don’t get an uptick in foot traffic and sales. It may not be the first time you see the benefit, or maybe even the second, as it may take a little bit to get the word around. But after a few tries, I have no doubt that you’ll see a big change in how many people are willing to walk through your doors.
Now what if you don’t have a store, but you do have an office? Well, if your office is big enough, you could have quarterly events – client appreciation events, educational events, holiday parties, etc. throughout the year, and provide them that way. But be sure to focus on quality, not quantity. A bunch of grocery store cupcakes are going to be a lot less appealing to people, especially higher level clientele, than high end, delicate, refined European pastries. And as you hold these events, and promote them, make sure you’re sharing (and showing) clients the experience that they can expect, and the delicacies they can take part in, while they’re there. As this first helps with promotion of the event and gets people in the door. But it also helps to further brand your firm and show them the type of client experience you provide.
Now, what if you don’t have a store, or an office ….? Well, too bad for you. Just kidding! Not true. If you don’t have a space, then things can get a bit more pricey as you may have to rent a space, or partner with a business who does, or….. you can just hold it in your own home. If your home is beautifully designed, and big enough to hold a get together, then just throw a get together in your own space. It’s a chance for you to return the favor to your clients, who are always inviting you into their home. And for them to feel closer to you, and see how beautifully designed your home is (which BONUS, may also give them additional ideas for updates they want to make in their own home).
Sweets Win Over Almost Everyone’s Heart
All in all, sweets win – especially when they’re high quality. So, get a little creative and figure out how you can turn your clients’ sweet tooth into something that’s good for business. And especially with the holidays right around the corner (sorry to say, but it’s true!), you’ve got some great opportunities to lavish your clients (and prospects) with a bit of sweet fun.
So go out there, find a fantastic bakery that you’d be proud to partner with (and bonus, if it’s a high end bakery they may even share a similar clientele with you so they may be willing to co-host the event) and see what you can put together. And have a darn good, sweet filled time while you’re doing it. Cause let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a good ol’ fashioned, warm, sweet smelling chocolate chip cookie? Very, very few people. And really, are those the kind of people you want as clients anyway? Nah….
Share in the comments below, what sweet and simple ideas have you used to appeal to new and current clients?
And if you’d like to join us for the last session of “The Exceptional Experience” of 2019 to get even more ideas on how to provide the kind of client experience that gets you greater loyalty, efficiency, and profits, register now!