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Give Your Customers A Little Something Extra


Drive-by Truckers encore

Great rock bands have been doing it for decades. They deliver a monster show. They work their audience into a fever pitch. Finally, after a few bows, they make their way off of the stage as the crowd roars. But they know the concert’s not over—not until they come out for an encore. Sure they could head straight for the tour bus, but instead great rock bands always give their fans more. 

That was exactly what happened when the Drive-By Truckers (pictured above) made a stop in Pittsburgh. After they finished their set, they came back out for a hand clapping, hard charging southern rock encore. The crowd LOVED it. I LOVED it. And that got me thinking about how much I love it when small businesses give their customers that little something extra. 

Although I’m sure we’d all agree it doesn’t happen nearly enough, a few examples immediately came to mind. They are, in no particular order:

A handwritten note. About a week after I purchased my first-ever couch, I received a nice handwritten note in the mail from my salesperson. Just to be clear, I’m talking about a personalized handwritten note, not something that was printed in comic sans font to look as though it was handwritten. I really appreciated the gesture and reading it immediately brought a smile to my face.

A mint. For years, Uncle Sam’s Subs, one of my all-time favorite restaurants, would place a mint under the wax paper in every one of their sandwich baskets. Even though I always knew it would be there, I always got a kick out of finding it. It was something a little extra. A nice little surprise (a surprise that also freshened your breath after downing a delicious chipped steak sub).

A $3.00 refund. This example actually comes from Mark Hayes over at Shopify following an unexpected refund he received when he ordered some 3D Doodle Pads. As you’ll see from his blog post about it, that one small gesture had a huge impact on him.

So what would you add to the list? I’d love to hear what you’re already doing to give your customers a little something extra or, on the flip side, what businesses have done to give you an encore performance. Share your thoughts below.

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