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Christmas treats or tricks?

Sales of chocolate boxes must surge at this time of year. Have always been a big fan of these multi coloured, multi option cartons, examples of which are in the photo. Stacked high in most supermarkets, they are often in the entrance area to grab the attention of potential buyers.

At a recent exhibition at London Excel I couldn’t resist gravitating to exhibitors who had chocolates available. Can’t ignore a dip in a bowl of Quality Street or Cadburys Roses! The aim though, was to grab the sweets and move on with the minimum interaction with the exhibitioner team.

This raises the point of how effective are the techniques we use to build customer interest. For shop based businesses, a small bowl of these chocolates can build a rapport with customers at the till. I do usually ask if I can take one, so that’s the start of the dialogue. But there is the danger of people like me who grab the freebies and take no further interest.

But these small level gifts do provide an indication that you do think about your customers. I can remember on a visit to New England some years ago, most of the restaurants had someone outside whose job was to convince passing trade to eat that night in that particular restaurant. The key attribute of that person was a great smile and a cheery disposition.

The provision of small give aways just helps to provide a positive experience. In marketing terms, can make you stand out in a busy marketplace. In times past have mentioned a restaurant filling the spoon of the after dinner coffees with Smarties. A small thing but memorable!

Long term, a small thank you after a large project can help to build a good memory. But one thing never changes, good consistent service can never be replaced by a few chocolates. Working closely with customers or clients on a consistent basis, ensuring their expectations are met will be for them, like Christmas everyday.

Enjoy the season. Everyday Business Support activities, including Full Ahead Together will be back in the New Yearwith some new initiatives, helping Businesses make everyday an extraordinary day.

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