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Positively Outrageous Service... thats our name for an exciting approach to loving customers that has allowed a handful of contrarian operators to defy the laws of recession and prosper in tough economic times.
Positively Outrageous Service is described as random, unexpected,
out-of-proportion service that invites the customer to play and creates
positive, compelling word of mouth.
POS Marketing may have been named by us but it was surely invented by that
first creative entrepreneur to discover that sizzle sells better than
The Great Lipton Dip was one of our own creations. We needed a clever way to introduce refillable tea mugs newly available at our small restaurant. We also wanted to follow the principles of POS Marketing as closely as possible. Heres what we did:
We set up a 12-foot above-ground swimming pool on our parking lot and filled it with 800-gallons of iced Lipton tea. Since it was Halloween, we substituted a large pumpkin for a lemon and invited local celebrity dippers to treat the crowd with their best rendition of the Lipton Dip.
Each celebrity dipper was then given a canvas bag containing 2,000 nickels to spread along the bottom of the pool. When we had 20,000 nickels - a full $1,000 cash - three teams of six high school girls (18 total) were invited to go diving for dollars in the great splash for cash and dip out as much coin as possible in ten freezing minutes. The cash retrieved would benefit their cheerleader, dance or drill teams.
Out of the pool came $993.70, nickel by nickel dropping over the edge from one of our refillable tea mugs.
Excuse me, I said best of all too soon. Very best of all is that we
were on the front page of the local newspaper two days in a row, the event
was covered by two radio stations and - heres the very-best-of-all
part....we didnt spend a dime on the whole darn event!
To introduce our new delivery vans, we decided to drop several thousand ping pong balls from a helicopter onto our parking lot. Each ball was good for a prize ranging from a color TV to a $500 shopping spree, all donated, and every ball was good for a free drink, Monday through Friday, at our restaurant.
The crowd was enormous. Traffic stopped. Businesses emptied. The crowd went wild.
Sales for the month were up an exact ninety percent above the same month of the previous year!
Fun, a draw to the location, involved the product and did something good for others. Thats POS Marketing!
Did all of our ideas fly? Well, not exactly. The Christmas we attempted to make snow on our parking lot certainly illustrated why you dont see many ski resorts in central Texas. And our rubber duck race to benefit the local emergency service volunteers wasnt all it was quacked up to be!
Still, the fact that we were always up to something borderline bizarre
kept us top of mind with our customers.
Like our Wing and a Prayer Celebration.
Every Christmas, we fired up the fryers and enjoyed the company of customers, off duty employees, family (natural and extended) plus dozens of volunteers as we cooked hundreds of meals for our friends. Local church groups gave of their special day to deliver meals to those who hungered - spiritually, physically or socially - we didnt care which.
The Wing and a Prayer Celebration was the exception that proved the
point. Sometimes you need to do something not because it makes economic
sense but just because it needs doing.
The lady was waiting for her order when I walked in. I noticed her and
P.O. Box 22307
Louisville, KY 40252