Slapping a person is not the most effective way to keep in contact with a client, however, when done correctly its actually great for business.
When a person is slapped “Physically” there is an instant interruption of the usual flow of events for the person being slapped. If the individual is slapped hard enough then the people that witnessed the interaction have been interrupted as well. Upon the completion of the actual slap, both the victim and the witnesses are waiting for the next phase of the interaction; the information stage. The information stage is the point at which an explanation is rendered. The explanation is the key tool that will be needed by all involved to disseminate the interaction that has taken place. Witnesses will immediately begin updating their Facebook, Twitter and any other Online Social Networking Site. Some people will place phone calls to close friends and relatives. A majority will take the information that they’ve seen and heard with them and use it in the context of cool stories and interesting happenings.
In business the same reaction applies when a company figuratively slaps their customer and interrupts the usual flow of events for the recipient. Kuddle Buddies Foundation, a non-profit organization in Cleveland, Ohio that has waged a war against Pediatric Cancer, slaps their donors monthly. Each donor that donates at least $25.00 receives a card every month from the organization. In the card is a heartfelt message that encourages, celebrates or reconnects with the donor. In addition to the message, a pediatric cancer fact is listed; however, there is no message about donating money or time. Kuddle Buddies only asks for contributions during their Annual Kuddle Buddies for Life Gala. The amazing attribute about their card program is that they receive more donations from the cards than they receive at their annual gala. Why? Kuddle Buddies slaps their donors with cards that are handwritten. They’ve realized that with all of the communication technology; people still like to receive mail, especially handwritten mail. That is how Kuddle Buddies interrupts the usual flow of events for their donors while giving their donors a reason to talk about them.
So how does an organization position itself to slap their customers and interrupt the usual flow of events? Companies have to think beyond just the “WOW” approach. They have to slap their customers so hard that they tell their friends and colleagues how great it felt.
Here are a few general principles that businesses need to consider to be an effective slapper:
- Don’t physically slap anyone as this will defeat the purpose (at least for the purpose of marketing).
- In marketing, the name of the game is interruption. In order for a company to get their current clients to talk about them they have to slap them with an experience that they are not used to.
- Slapping is not a one time deal you have to do it over and over again.
- Find out what customers or prospects wish they could get from their current vendor and potential vendors that they are currently not getting. Then slap them with that feature by turning it into an experience.
Always try to build campaigns that force customers to share with someone else online and offline. It’s sort of like sending flowers to someone’s place of employment. Everyone at the place of business would like to get involved, be nosy, find out who the flowers are from and talk about it.