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How to make something really small go on forever
by Janet Torley on 12/04/2016

I was again reminded of this in marketing terms during my recent sojourn to Rome.  Indeed I have come to the conclusion I need to go on lots of holidays as inspiration seems to abound when I am away from the desk.  OK, my excuse and I am sticking to it.

So, let’s set the scene.  Having just ‘done’ The Vatican, we were in need of some sustenance.  A restaurant on the periphery of one of Rome’s most visited attractions doesn’t sound like a plan.  Indeed an invitation to rip off territory in the waiting.  However, it was hot, we were foot weary and time was precious so the decision was made on passing a pleasant enough looking restaurant and the lady at the door was very welcoming.

The menu was fair and the prices looked good, indeed perhaps too good to be true so our expectations were not sky high.  However, our expectations were not just exceeded, they were totally eclipsed:

  1.  The food was very tasty and delivered promptly with extra style and panache
  2. The wine was excellent and the ‘glass’ was really a bucket in disguise

Then the extras appeared to delight us:

  1. A plate with some tasty cake nibbles was delivered – we said, we did not order this but this was waived away as no problem
  2. The bottle of Limoncello was delivered – we said, we did not order this but again this was waived away as no problem.  We were obliged to partake!!!!

If that was not enough, we were entertained throughout the whole meal by the owner singing in the street, he was crazy but so entertaining.  The staff were continually enquiring if we were OK and seemed quite genuine.

Now, by the time it came to go, to say we were a trifle squiffy was an understatement, but not too far gone to be ready to query the extras on our bill which we never asked for.  And here’s the really important bit, there was no extra charges beyond what we had ordered.  In reality the cake probably costs next to nothing and as we all know Limoncello in Italy sells for a pittance a bottle.  These ‘extras’ cost the restaurant only pennies.  These extras meant the world to us and consequently we will recommend this place for years to come.  Indeed the first thing I did was write a glowing Trip Advisor and Google 5 Star review.

So what’s the lesson here for us all in business.  Have a look around your business, what can you offer your clients as an extra that will cost you very little, but might mean a whole lot more to them?

And, that’s where I can help you.  Sometimes it can be hard to think outside the box on this one but my Practical Marketing experience and ability to think outside said box might be all you need to unlock the wow factor for your clients.  They’ll love you and give you 5 star reviews everytime.

(Image – lady at far left is welcoming owner and chap with tie, our entertainment and her husband I think.  The others, no idea at all – just wanted to share this image I found on web search)