How 35 Cents Made me a Return Customer (and Got Me to Write This Blog Post)

The other day I stopped by Ike’s Lair for lunch. Someone recommend it and figured I’d give it a go. I’m pretty picky since Oakland has some great food, so I entered the shop with skepticism.

It’s a cute place…they have bright colors, retro lunchboxes on the wall, and the sandwiches have clever names like “Spiffy Tiffy”.

I ordered my sandwich (actually, they were out of the first one I requested) and then waited. A while. It was 2, but somehow it was packed.

Download

Finally, they called my name and I went to pick up my sandwich. The cashier smiled, bagged my sandwich, and put in a lollipop. “Have a great day!”

These were the lollipops I grew up with – the sour apple-flavored ones covered in caramel. The ones I coveted as a kid. (They also had a box of more old-fashioned pops…maybe they give these to baby boomers?)

I don’t really eat lollipops these days, and if I wanted to I could go to the corner store and buy one for 35 cents.

But that little act, that 35c cost, brought me happiness. Why? Because I got a prize. I got a bonus. I got a nice gesture, where normally I get a bunch of plastic utensils I don’t need.

You know what? I don’t entirely remember how good the sandwich tasted. It was pretty good. And the lollipop wasn’t really all that tasty. What I do remember is how I was treated. I’ll be back to try more of their sandwiches.

Sometimes, delighting your customers can be cheap and easy. How can you spend 35c to create a return customer?

Get our best stuff delivered directly to your inbox.

No thanks

Want to build swoon-worthy products?

At UserVoice, we help you turn customer feedback into a better product. We aggregate incoming product ideas and measure the business value of each idea so you can prioritize what to build next. Uncover your next big feature today!

Start Free Trial