Giving Customers Added Value
We like to think the added value we give our customers lies in our care and concern as well as our product knowledge. Sometimes it’s nice to also put something extra in their bag.
After adding the receipt and the printout from the POS machine, they reach for their parcel only to be interrupted by me saying, “And our free gift to you today is…”
That gets their attention.
The free gift isn’t necessarily from us, but from the many ministry organizations we’ve partnered with who provide us with materials that not only can enrich their lives, but make them aware of what the organization does. Over the past few years this has included:
- In Touch Ministries (Charles Stanley) — These guys are great to work with and customers don’t mind binge reading devotionals from previous months, knowing the stature of the author in question.
- Our Daily Bread — They publish smaller supplemental booklets which our customers appreciate. There’s usually several over the course of a year. Right now it’s a little booklet by Luis Palau.
- The Gideons — We’re careful giving their Biblezines, as they are costly to produce and we don’t want to be witnessing to the already converted. But with the right customers, we know the Light Biblezine is the right choice.
- Faith Today Magazine — In our early days we did several giveaways of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada’s magazine, and decided this year to see if we could return to doing this. They sometimes have overstock of a print run, and have been really helpful.
- Canadian Bible Society — We automatically include a copy of the Where to Look in the Bible tract with each Bible purchase, but sometimes in conversation I will feel led to give this to other customers as well. We also use the little How Our Bible Came to Us booklet for customers who have an interest in various Bible translations.
Sometimes we will refer people to the organizations in question if they wish to defray costs. With Our Daily Bread, people hand us a dollar or two every now and then, and I’ll go online a few times a year and make a donation equal to or greater than the small donations we collect.
We also purchase blowout books from time to time that cost only 25, 50 or 75 cents and give these out to customers who make a significant purchase or regular price items. Some of these are actually fairly good books in fairly good condition. Customers appreciate the gesture and sometimes return and ask if they might purchase additional copies.