By Graham Brooks of londoncakes.com and cakesnextday.com
1. REPEAT BUSINESS
If you win a contract or sizable order send a cake to your customer’s office saying thank you and looking forward to working with you.
Woodford Heating, a successful commercial plumbing company sends their clients a ‘Thank You’ cake to his clients for new contracts.
The cake gets shared around the office and other buyers get to know of the company. Guess what?
More often than not they receive a new enquiry and further business.
As a result of a £40 cake new business of more than £10 000 has been awarded.
2. PRODUCT LAUNCH
Send an image cake in to a few journalists. Ribena and Samsung used cakes from us to launch a new branding and got good press coverage as a result. One of the worlds’ best known chocolate brands had a cake delivered to their London HQ with a new brand image on the top. The cake was for the Directors Board Meeting. Ask yourself would a printed image have had the same impact as the image on a cake?
3. STAFF RECOGNITION
A delivered cake costs less than £45. Many of the UK’s best known retailers send cakes to branches that have over-achieved. Rather than a single present for one individual a cake can be shared with the team and provide a good occasion for a little team appreciation.
Psychologically a cake reminds us of our childhood. We remember a time of celebration, when we were the focus of attention and gives us a warm fuzzy feeling. Try mentioning cake in a small group and see the response and excitement that it produces.
L’Occitane send a cake to each store on the anniversary of the store. So even the store has a birthday. A good excuse to say thanks to the branch and further increase loyalty for the company and local outlet, all for the price of one cake.
4. LAPSED CUSTOMERS
We all have them, but how many of us contact them to reignite the flame? Picking up the phone straight away should be a good first step, if this receives a luke warm response then a cake may a good way forward.
Humour is a good ice breaker, so think about Googling a funny image or adding a funny speech bubble to a photo or cartoon.
For those that have read the excellent book, ‘The Art Of Influence’
by Robert Cialdini, you may recall the first principle of persuasion-‘Repciprocation’. This is defined as – “people feel indebted to those who do something for them or give them a gift.”
A cake definitely ticks this box.
Put yourself in the mind of a buyer you are looking for a new supplier of Widgets. Company A, emails a catalogue of their Widgets, Company B sends you cake with a personal message to you. On the cake is a small QR code, which when scanned takes you to a video on their website introducing their company and products.
Which company do you think is more likely to get the business?
Even without the QR code company B are more likely to get the business, the use of modern technology and video is just a really nice touch likely to pay dividends.
Just this month Santander used this exact method to send cakes to key people in the Press to gain PR for their 123 account campaign.
6. PRESS PICTURES and FREE PR.
Celebrating ANYTHING make sure you have a cake with the key message on it. Grab a few pictures of people around the cake. Send this to the press along with a well worded press release, costs very little and may well get you some valuable FREE PR. A cake says you have something to celebrate and tells the world you are doing well.