Giving the gift of moldy brownies, how not to reward repeat customers

A few years ago I decided to do something nice for a customer after wrapping up a major project.

Instead of just sending them a thank you email, I decided to send them a small gift.


Gooey, chocolate brownies.

I had a recommendation for an ecommerce store to use, ordered a box, and shipped it to my clients address.

A few weeks later I followed up with that customer and asked if they got my brownies.

"Oh, that address. That's our mail drop address for our corporate mail. We check it like once a quarter when we're in the area."

So that idea was a bust.

But a few months later they emailed me again.

"Thanks for the brownies. We threw them away but the thought was nice."

Years later they are still a regular customer and have spent over six-figures with me.

The moral of this story is to send your customers old and stale food.


How about this instead:

Try a bit harder than usual to do something nice and unexpected for your customers now and then.

It doesn't have to be a large gift or anything.

If you normally send a thank you email, send them a postcard.

If you normally call them, send them a handwritten letter.

This can work really well with your repeat customers. There's less of them so it's easier on you and they'll appreciate the extra attention.

All you need is:

  1. Something to tell you when a repeat customer purchases.
  2. A process to create and send them the extra thanks.
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