and getting a surprise! (If you expected me to say “spending time with loved ones,” I’m sorry— I’m focused
on making you some money here.)
Mastering the “art of the surprise” should be a key part of your holiday strategy, as it can make a big impact both during and after the shopping season.
Surprises fall into one of two categories: good surprises and bad surprises. Admit it—you’ve congratulated your own acting ability by faking mock-enthusiasm over a gift you secretly wanted to throw in the trash afterwards. That’s a bad surprise. With good surprises, though, you genuinely gush over something great you never saw coming.
When you ship your customers something they ordered, there’s zero surprise. They got what they expected to get, and you fulfilled your part of the bargain—what’s wrong with that? Plenty.
Your customer now has something tangible from your company in their hands. It’s no longer virtual, like your website. Your products are now very real, and so is your brand. To inspire real emotional connections with your brand at that moment, you need to go above and beyond what’s expected. Any old company can throw their product in a box with some packing material. The exceptional company will also throw in something extra that shows they really care about their customer. When they do that, their marketing suddenly matters a whole lot more.
I recently ordered a few items from an online store. I was really excited to get this stuff, but I was taken aback when I opened up the box and saw a surprise. In addition to my order, the store had also thrown in a really cool black t-shirt with their logo on it! Nice!
Now, did it cost a few bucks for the store to throw in that free t-shirt? Of course. But how much do you think it benefited their brand to have me walk around with that shirt on, bragging to friends and family not only about my new purchases—but also about the awesome store I got it all from?
I got a surprisingly cool magnet from another merchant I ordered from. That magnet is right here on my computer, getting comments from others as well as terrific exposure for that store’s brand. Can’t beat that!
Many EYStudios clients will include a hand-written thank-you card to customers. That’s a very affordable gesture that is still a great surprise. My advice is to put some effort behind the design of the card; don’t just scrawl a note on the invoice. Get some nice color inserts printed with a picture of you or your staff. Include a coupon code to encourage a repeat visit.
That leads me to a really great tip: GIFT CARD GIVEAWAYS!
It is very affordable to get some custom-branded gift cards to include in your packages. Your logo and special discount offer would go on the front, with the coupon code on the back. Don’t worry about it being a single-use coupon, either. If there’s an expiration date attached, why would you care if someone re-uses that code over and over for individual purchases? People love gift cards, and giving them one as a surprise is a great way to encourage repeat visits.
Need help with branded material to include in your packages this holiday season? There’s still time to get a customized campaign going! Just fill out our Contact Form or let your EYStudios account manager know you’re interested. This holiday season, think INSIDE the box!
P.S. Want some proven sales-boosters to help attract and convert customers? Dozens of our awesome EY clients are already getting their stores ready for the holiday frenzy—don’t be left behind!