The best kind of marketing

abbyballoon.jpg 

I rarely go to the grocery store, but today I needed some bananas to make Kevin’s Power Smoothie™, so I loaded up the girls (I’m on kid duty after my “bike time” this morning) and headed to Tom Thumb because Megan said they have organic produce. 

When I pulled into the parking lot, Abby immediately spotted a shopping basket with a red plastic car attached to the front.  Score!  Abby jumped into the car and I put Allie’s car seat on top of the basket and was on my way.  I grabbed the bananas, and after checking out (total: $0.69), Abby spotted the floral department so of course she had to have a balloon.  There was a big sign that said “Balloons: $0.99”, but the nice lady working there didn’t charge us and even let Abby pick the color.  She also attached a little plastic weight to the end of the balloon so it won’t fly away.  Nice touch.

Bottom line:  Within 5 minutes I had my bananas without a peep out of either kid.  Priceless!

And it’s also a score for Tom Thumb.  They didn’t make any money on my visit today, but they provided a great experience for me, so I’m 100% more likely to come back the next time I need a few things.

Too often, when people think about marketing, they think about ads.  But the best (and often cheapest) way to market your product is simply to create a great customer experience.  An experience that makes the customer want to tell others — or even post about it on their blog.

[P.S.  The picture above is of Abby — she fell asleep holding the balloon!]

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