In the age of growth we find ourselves in—where businesses are working relentlessly to find ways to engage customers, get influencers on their side and find themselves in hot pursuit of the elusive ability to go viral—a lot of attention seems to be placed on the next sale, the next win, the next something.
In a fun flip of the current trend, there are companies that are making a solid—and creative—effort to paint a new picture - spending time and applying intention to saying thank you to the folks already in their customer pool; they're doing customer appreciation differently…and making a splash (in the form of custom paint-by-number kits) as they do it.
For example: Toyota; a huge company invested in putting their customers first through an appreciation event that touched 500 existing customers - from all over North America.
It was one of the more unique requests for a corporate bundle of Paintsmallio Artist Series kits that we had received. Their goal: see what previous customers completed a short survey, then send those customers a kit as a thank you for their insight and for being a Toyota customer.
The Toyota team chose four images, and as the numbers came in and we saw the mounting number of pots of paint to be mixed, poured, and packed, and the number of canvases to be stretched continue to grow, we knew we had an exciting—and BIG—job in front of us.
Ramping up the team by hiring eight extra staff, six people mixed and poured paint for three weeks straight. We hand stretched 500+ canvases. We packed every single box - cranking out 500+ kits in under a month.
The project—like all of our customer requests—taught us a handful of interesting lessons. One: that companies are invested in trying new and different ways to show their appreciation and surprise and delight their customers in unexpected ways. Two: brand marketing can be SO expansive, with endless possibilities for ways to integrate their product. Three: we learned a whole heap about our team’s ability to pivot, to rally behind a HUGE goal, and a deeper, more expansive understanding of how being tuned into our supply chain can make—or break—our ability to move fast on big bodies of work.
Perhaps what we love most is the bigger lesson about creative thinking—whether applied to branding campaigns or how a business can handle a BIG and exciting request from a client—and how it’s the key to making interesting and exciting outcomes happen that may not have otherwise. That, and the gleeful reality that unexpected drops of joy in the lives and laps of people supporting a business along the way are always, always a good thing.