Recency: Where is the lagniappe in your marketing? (Stan Phelps)

Lagniappe1 Drew's Note:  As I try to do every Friday, I'm pleased to bring you a guest post.  Meet another  thought leader who shares his insights via the blogosphere. So without further ado…Stan Phelps.  Again. Enjoy!

The concept of primacy and recency simply defined is: People have a greater recall of the first thing and the last thing they experience.  Advertisers are well aware of this principle as it relates to television.

The first and last three seconds of a thirty second spot are the most critical.  The first three seconds are all about grabbing your attention and the last three seconds are about reinforcing your message or brand. 

In general marketing, primacy is important because you 'never get a second chance to make a first impression', but recency is the last thing your customer or client remembers before they walk out the door or hang up the phone.   

Challenge:  How do you leave a great impression after the sale is made or the contract is signed?

There is great word that originated in Louisiana called 'lagniappe' (pronounced lan-yap).  The creole word literally translated means 'the gift.''  It refers to a small unexpected extra gift or benefit presented by a store owner to a customer at the time of purchase. The people of Louisiana have embraced the term and have broadened the definition to include any time a little something extra is given.  [Click here to read Mark Twain's account of his first introduction to lagniappe from Life on the Mississippi]

How do you integrate the concept of 'lagniappe' into your marketing?

Here are the four main ingredients:

  1. Unexpected – the extra benefit or gift should be a surprise.  It is something thrown in for good measure.  Think 'surprise and delight'.
  2. Relevant – the item or benefit should be of value to the recipient.  Make sure that the item or service is a true benefit.  It shouldn't be a one size fits all proposition.
  3. Unique – if it's a small token or gift, try to select something that's rare, hard to find or unique to your business.  
  4. Authentic – many times it comes down to the gesture.  It becomes more about 'how' it is given, as opposed to 'what' is given. The small gift or extra communicates that you care about your client and you appreciate their patronage.

In today's difficult business landscape the ability to provide 'added value' will set you apart from your competitors.  Are you always striving to deliver above and beyond?  What is that 'little something extra'? 

Where is the lagniappe in your marketing?

Stan Phelps is Executive Vice President at Synergy Events.  Synergy is an award winning experiential marketing agency specializing in mobile marketing tours, pr events / launches and sponsorship activation. You can also check out his blog 9 INCH MARKETING which discusses how to bridge the gap between traditional and social media by taking a sensory approach to integrated marketing. [FACT: The average distance between the brain and the heart is 9 inches]

Every Friday is "grab the mic" day.  Want to grab the mic and be a guest blogger on Drew's Marketing Minute?  Shoot me an e-mail.

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12 comments on “Recency: Where is the lagniappe in your marketing? (Stan Phelps)

  1. Isn’t it amazing how much more special something feels when you give it a special name? Anyone can give a gift, but it takes real pizazz to give a lagniappe. Great post.

    @bdunc1

  2. Stan Phelps says:

    Thanks Brett. In general I think overall marketing spend is about 95% focused on acquisition and only 5% on retention. It’s too bad as studies show that it takes 5 times the dollars to acquire a new customer than it takes to keep one.
    Lagniappe is all about how to make that first timer into an occasional, the occasional into a regular, the regular into a frequent and the frequent into an evangelist for your brand or service.
    You hit the nail on the head. It takes pizazz. If it looks or feels contrived . . . or if its not relevant or unique . . . then its going to miss the mark.
    @9INCHmarketing

  3. In todays world, the extra mile cant be extra, it has to be included or you will be extinct. Too many people think the client walks out and thinks of them. Out of sight out of mind, I am afraid. If you are not genuinely connecting and more important solving the problems that keep them up at night, your memory will be shorter than a knee of a grasshopper.
    You have to work hard to connect them and engage them so when they leave they have action steps of rethinking about you. Just my .02 cents.

    Chad Rothschild

  4. Brett,

    You know I hadn’t thought about it that way, but you’re right. It sounds silly but a cool name does add some sexiness to the effort.

    A good reminder as we package our goods/services.

    Drew

  5. Hey Chad,

    I’m not sure I am tracking with you. Are you saying that we can never surprise or delight our customers because they should always expect the extra mile?

    Let me give you an hypothetical. If, when we send a bill to a client (and they’re happy with the work we’ve done) if we sent them a marketing book as a thank you — that wouldn’t be the lagniappe that Stan is talking about?

    I don’t disagree…you have to be better than good to keep a customer. But I am not sure the two ideas cancel each other out.

    Looking forward to your thoughts.

    Drew

  6. Melody says:

    Great article Stan & Drew. I totally get the message you are sharing here. I try to include some “lagniappe” in all my dealing with customers, a practice that has paid off very well for me.

    It doesn’t have to take a lot of effort, time or money either.

  7. Melody,

    Can you give us some examples of how you add some lagniappe for your customers?

    And you’re right, it’s more the gesture than the dollars spent.

    Drew

  8. Too many people think the client walks out and thinks of them. Out of sight out of mind, I am afraid. If you are not genuinely connecting and more important solving the problems that keep them up at night, your memory will be shorter than a knee of a grasshopper.

  9. It’s too bad as studies show that it takes 5 times the dollars to acquire a new customer than it takes to keep one.
    Lagniappe is all about how to make that first timer into an occasional, the occasional into a regular, the regular into a frequent and the frequent into an evangelist for your brand or service.

  10. It’s too bad as studies show that it takes 5 times the dollars to acquire a new customer than it takes to keep one.
    Lagniappe is all about how to make that first timer into an occasional, the occasional into a regular, the regular into a frequent and the frequent into an evangelist for your brand or service.

  11. Camwood, I really love your point, about being connected with the client. It is important to make sure that the client will remember us and then will using us again as their supplier. Nice shot.

  12. It becomes more about ‘how’ it is given, as opposed to ‘what’ is given. The small gift or extra communicates that you care about your client and you appreciate their patronage.

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