Free beer

Isn’t it great, when you are offered something for free?

For example, I was in Brussels Sunday and Monday gone. When I arrived at the Hilton Hotel, and whilst checking in, the lady said Thank You for being a loyal Hilton customer and here’s a voucher for a free drink at the bar.

Wow – free drink! I’ve not been offered one before in all my stays at the Hilton in Brussels. Not sure why I was offered one on this occasion, but I’ll kindly accept. Thank you.

Now this is customer service, and got me thinking – have they been reading my blog? – picked up on my experience at the Mercure Hotel? – do they remember from previous visits, that once upon a time, I wasn’t happy with the service of the staff at this same hotel? or is it, that I’ve been staying here so many times they’ve decided to reward me?

Well, I could have kept on thinking but I didn’t, as I sipped away on my free large beer…

Why do companies offer ‘freebies’?

Well, there’s a number of reasons. Some mentioned above – to reward loyal customers, to keep them engaged with the brand, etc… usually, it’s when there’s a new product or item being launched and free (usually smaller versions) of the product are sent out or provided to people to taste, sample, enjoy… so they’ll remember it next time they are shopping.

You even have websites dedicated to free items, such as http://www.latestfreestuff.co.uk/ or http://dealnews.com/freebies/ – there’s many more like these out there.

And this is not a recent thing…

Big brands have been doing it for a while. Enticing the customer in… giving them a taste and marketing it in a way they want more.

I think it’s a great way to drive business because customers know what they want and buy their regular items. For something new, they’ll need to learn about it, the benefits (this could be healthier choice, something more enjoyable than their regular item or it’s a lower cost without compromising quality).

Not just consumables, photographers, designers, whatever you do, you could do something free for a few folk, or even do something free for charities, where your talent is showcased and people know what you’re capable off. If they see something you’ve done, and think… wow! – they’ll a) remember you and b) compare you to others they would have noticed.

And that’s exactly what businesses and organisations want. To be remembered.

For me, I will be staying at the Hilton again, when in Brussels.

Though, not expecting another free beer. But hey, if they offer me one… I won’t say no.

3 thoughts on “Free beer”

  1. You are right. even in supermarkets, they give away free items. sometimes you cant help impulse buy once you’ve tasted the free item. I’m a sucker in Costco for that.
    This is a great way to make people buy your products. especially when there are similar products on the market, most will go with the brand they know because they don’t know if the new product is nice – and this gives them an opportunity to sample and make a valid decision over “the norm”.

    More to the point I think is loyalty. I don’t think enough companies reward loyalty. you never get the best deal from companies, they tend to aim at new customers to get them in. But what’s keeping the current customers – they rely on the current customer to be lazy. That was fine back in the day but nowadays we have so many compare websites for literally everything that the customers can move with no hassle. this is what needs to be addressed, reward the loyal customer.
    Like you will now stay with Hilton due to them rewarding loyalty

      1. If it tasted great and was better than an original (if not an original concept – such as tomato sauce) then yes, especially if it was cheaper. problem is some people no matter what “word associate”. For example:
        When they think of Vacuum cleaners people say “hoover”
        When they think of a 4×4 they say “Jeep”
        When they think of tomato sauce they say “ketchup”
        If not an original concept you have to break these initial ideologies and there isn’t a better way than free samples. its like advertisement without the massive costs. most supermarkets do it now.

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