Thursday, May 06, 2010

If at first you don't succeed, send them some crazy handwritten envelope & note.

About a couple years ago Lynette and I visited a restaurant called Sapori with my partner here at Inkling, Adam, and his wife. Adam had some fond memories of this place.

Trouble was, I didn't like my meal. Lynette's wasn't any great shakes either. So there wasn't any draw to really go back to this place and give it a second chance. Lynette and I have an endless list of restaurants we still want to try for a first chance in Chicago.

But then 12 months ago, almost exactly, since my half birthday is in May, I got an envelope in the mail just like this

This wasn't fake handwriting like the AT&T example I blogged about before, this was some real person writing all over the front and back of this envelope.

It immediately got my attention. Who on earth is personally writing me like this, and celebrating my half birthday? The Chef at Sapori!?

Inside was a gift certificate. I forget the denomination. It might have been like $19.30 or something. (I've seen him use some uneven looking numbers for his gift certificates/coupons before as well.)

And sure enough, this little marketing gimmick got Lynette and I to have dinner at Sapori again, and this time we thoroughly enjoyed it. And it had nothing to do with the gimmick anymore. This time the food kicked some ass.

Whoever this guy Chef Anthony is he's got a great little marketing tactic going on in celebrating people's half birthdays as well as getting his direct mail marketing noticed.

It worked on me 12 months ago, and now I was excited to get my second half birthday certificate from the guy this month. I can't wait to go back to Sapori again.

I've got an email out to him to see if he wouldn't mind sharing anything he's learned about this campaign he's been running. How was he inspired to do this? Who does he learn from? Who's doing all the writing on these certificates and envelopes since it must be somewhat time consuming? And how successful has it been for him? I'll follow up this post to let you know if I hear back.

Here's a couple more shots of the back of the envelope and the inside letter he sent.


44 stamps

I've been reading about guerrilla marketing tactics. And saw one I've seen before, but seemed fitting considering the one above seems to work on me. Instead of using a single stamp on your envelope, use 44 1 cent stamps. If someone got an envelope plastered in stamps, they probably are going to notice it, and might open that thing up.


I might try a bit of snail mail marketing myself. It seems that most web based companies are only thinking about web based ways of marketing themselves, and that would seem to miss all the great offline opportunities to get yourself noticed.

Here's an example of a postcard I plan on trying to market our collaboration tool for small businesses.

I'll let you know how it goes.

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