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.
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.