Giving gifts generously

Halloween in NYC is visiting shops instead of houses. One of the shops we visited last night was a fancy new coffee place in Tribeca - nitro cold brew, etc. They gave out homemade Rice Krispie Treats in a lightweight branded paper bag with the name of the shop. Beautiful presentation.

Upon opening the bag, the treat inside was tiny - a fraction of the size of a normal Rice Krispie Treat. It was more like a sample.

I was reminded of one of Danny Meyer’s maxims in Setting The Table:

Some restaurants [during Restaurant Week], unfortunately, offer inexpensive fare and propose very limited menu options as a way to manage costs and do a bit better than break even on a three-course meal. We take the opposite approach. I am convinced that if you’re going to offer a gift, it’s important to give it graciously. We approach Restaurant Week by offering a generous number of choices for the appetizer, main course, and dessert, representing considerably more than $20 worth of food and quality. The point is to make people feel a sense of abundance and value.

What is lost today in the cost of generosity is a fraction of what stands to be gained through the act of that generosity. It’s a rounding-error marketing expense. Customers don’t miss obviously generous and gracious gestures. In fact, as the average major metro retail business is no doubt aware, opportunities for the kind of exposure and new customer acquisition like that of Halloween are rare - a few times a year at most. A few times a year to really bring in new customers who can tell their friends & come back repeatedly. Walking around the city yesterday, it was surprising how few shops appreciated this & did anything to stand out - basically none.

Take advantage of the rare opportunities for new customer touchpoints to put your absolute best foot forward.