“For [a product] to surprise me, it must be satisfying expectations I didn’t know I had.”
Paul Graham, Made in USA
So I actually titled a business article on a marketing website “Surprise Hugs and Surprises Kisses”!
Trust me, I’m going somewhere with this… I promise.
I am daddy to two of the sweetest little girls in the whole world (yes, I’m slightly prejudiced. 😉 ) My oldest is 3 1/2 and when I leave the house in the mornings I always ask for a hug and a kiss. About 6 months back, she put a twist on our little goodbye ritual…
…now, when I say goodbye, I have to get really close to her and pretend I’m not paying attention. Then, when the moment is just right, she grabs me around my neck and gives me a ‘surprise hug’ and a ‘surprise kiss.’
My response is to wrap her in a big ‘daddy hug’ and smother her in kisses because surprise hugs and kisses are so much better than the ones you ask for and expect…
…she’s a very smart little girl!
The lesson to be learned is the value of a pleasant surprise. When you deliver quality products and services to your customers (as you always should) they come to expect it from you. You want that kind of reputation, but it doesn’t position you in the front of your customer’s mind. A pleasant surprise, however, will do just that.
My recent purchase of a marketing course perfectly illustrates the value of this concept. I spent several thousand dollars and felt that the training I received was well worth the money – in short, I was satisfied. The marketer who created the product did a good job.
…then came the surprises!
One of the bonuses for the course was a free 2 day seminar – first come first serve until the spaces ran out. Well, I didn’t get to attend. But, after the event, the video recordings of the event were made available for free to all customers. This was never promised, just a very nice surprise.
A few smaller surprises came up along the way. A free video training course and some reports and audios that were relevant to me as a student of the course. All very high quality and unexpected.
Later, the course was delivered as a DVD based home study course and re-launched. New bonuses were added and I kind of wished that I’d waited to get this version instead of the online-only version. Guess what…
…surprise, I received the entire physical version of the course AT NO COST! When the product launched, all previous customers got the new version. Plus, we got the new bonus and the option to attend a new 2 day seminar (and the videos from that were available for free as well.)
This marketer massively over-delivered on my expectations and cemented a place in my mind as a valuable mentor. All that was required was a few ‘surprise hugs’ and ‘surprises kisses’.
Do not think that the only way to surprise your customers is by giving away big fancy unannounced bonuses.
Little things go a long way. Any resource that will be valuable to your customer is enough to work. Selling a print book – offer a free digital copy. Selling an audio recording – provide a free transcript. Even a quality resale rights product that matches up well with your main product will do the trick.
When you join the IM Insights Newsletter family (using the subscription box in the side column or below this article) I offer two high quality content packed surprise downloadable reports to try and WOW you a little. Even though the content of my newsletters is top-quality, it is not enough these days to break through the clutter. I’m hoping to stand out in your mind a little with this surprise so you’ll keep opening and reading my future emails.
The key to making this work is to go beyond the expectations your customer has already – not just for you and your products, but for everyone in your market. Do something surprising that separates you from them all and puts you in the front of their mind.
So, what can you do to give a ‘surprise hug and surprise kiss’ experience to your customers today?
Make ’em smile and they will make you wealthy!
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