Boutique Marketing Idea: Impress Someone. Now!


Photography Business Institute
Photography Business Institute


I want to share a fun boutique marketing idea to inspire you to get your week moving. As I pretty much eat, sleep and breathe marketing, I am a little bit (okay, a lot) hard to impress. But, when someone goes the extra mile (or two), and knocks my socks off, I am all the more motivated to gush.

Last week at an event for Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), I met a man named John Ruhlin. I love to meet new people and especially ones who are interested in talking about boutique marketing (when I say boutique, I am referring to the business model, not a gift shop).

My husband and I were on our way out, but we asked a mutual friend to connect us online. This led to us exchanging a few emails and setting up a time to chat a week later. About 3 days later, I received a box in the mail with this set of knives custom engraved with MY LOGO, Photography Business Institute.

For any of you who know how much I love branding (and my logo), needless to say, I was impressed (although clearly, John had no idea he was sending the sharpest knife made to the most uncoordinated woman ever). There was a note saying how he was looking forward to “carving out some time” to chat. Imagine my excitement to pick up the phone later that week for our scheduled meeting.

Not surprisingly, his company specializes in high level gifting and strategic appreciation. His entire focus is to open some tightly sealed doors of VIPs so that he can do business with them. He often uses the top-of-the-line Cutco knives like he sent me. And doors open.

Now bring this strategy back to your business. When there is so much competition out there and when so many people are all fighting for the best (and usually busy) customers, what are YOU doing to set yourself apart? Granted, you probably don’t have it in the budget to send these expensive knives to everyone you want to be a client, but I want you to take the inspiration to do something that gives others chills to set yourself apart.

Every year, we “gift” our best clients at my photography studio at the end of the year. Whether we send them custom note cards or hand leaded-glass ornaments created by a local artist, we make sure that they know how much we appreciate them and we start planning that NOW. I love the quote, “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” NLP Adage

I would love to hear what you are doing to open doors or reward your best clients below. Get creative and impress someone. Now!




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