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Newsletter #780: The “Go to Them” Issue

[Welcome back to the Damn, I Wish I Thought of That! newsletter. This is text of the great issue all of our email subscribers just received. Sign yourself up using the handy form on the right.]

Sometimes you can make life easier on your customers by going where they are instead of asking them to stop in. A few ideas on how to do it:

1> For the commute
2> For lunch
3> For the big game
4> Check it out: Not Always Right

1> For the commute

Commutes can be long and grueling for your customers. If you can make it easier, you can earn some serious love. At four major metro stations in Paris, IKEA set up furniture displays with big comfy couches and reading lamps. Instead of fighting to pull customers in, they took their store to a place they went every day. Maybe taking over a subway isn’t in your budget, but most of your customers have a commute. Could you find a way to make it easier, faster, or more enjoyable — and earn some word of mouth, too?

The lesson: Pulling customers into your store requires a lot of energy and expense. Look for ways to make it easier by joining them at spots they go every day.

Learn more: Freshome

2> For lunch

If you’ve got hungry customers, you’ve got an opportunity to beat the competition by going straight to them. Construction workers rebuilding the World Trade Center can spend half of their lunch breaks just taking elevators down to buy their lunch. Subway created a brilliant solution: Take their store to them. More than simple delivery, Subway converted a shipping container into a store. Each day, a crane lifts the full-service franchise up to the workers, saving everyone a ton of time and energy.

The lesson: If you can take your great stuff straight to your hungry customers, why would they go anywhere else?

Learn more: Neatorama

3> For the big game

Sporting events are great opportunities to go to your customers. It’s one of the rare times they’ve got all of their friends and family together. Wendy’s used the opportunity during the NCAA Tournament to offer gift certificates for their boneless wings to fans who organized viewing parties. The result was hundreds of in-home taste tests and a bunch of buzz for Wendy’s new product.

The lesson: Get the most out of your outreach by focusing on the opportunities when your customers are bringing everyone together.

Learn more: Brandweek

4> Check it out: Not Always Right

If you work in customer service, you’ll like Not Always Right. It’s great therapy for anyone who might be wondering if they’re alone in the world of colorful customers and clients.

Check it out:

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  1. Stephanie M. Cockerl April 29, 2010 at 10:45 am #

    I recently went to a college baseball game. The announcer mentioned to call a pizza chain and they would deliver the pizza right to their seat. The bad news was that it was the 7th inning. Who would want to order any food that late in the game?

  2. Jason Sokol April 29, 2010 at 7:27 pm #

    I have recently seen a variety of local grocery stores that are getting involved in “taking it to them” by showing up at local businesses and providing them with lunch. It is a cool way to demonstrate that they offer healthy and tasty alternatives to fast food.

  3. Brian Crouch May 3, 2010 at 5:11 pm #

    Love it. I was thinking of a “Better Customers Bureau” a while back: glad to see someone came up with a cleverer idea.

  4. Brian Crouch May 3, 2010 at 5:12 pm #

    (My comment was in response to “Not Always Right” in case that wasn’t clear. )

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