How do you reward your VIP customers to drive loyalty and profitability?

When I started dating my now-husband, the awesome and patient Joe, he was a confirmed Gap shopper. Nothing wrong with the Gap. Over time, as he became more senior at work, he decided to up his work clothes game. Over the years he’s had some hits and misses. Most recently, he’s found shopping nirvana at the Trunk Club.

Trunk Club will send you a box (er, trunk) of clothes that’s tailored to your needs. You decide what you want to keep and send back the rest. The company works virtually and also has some brick-and-mortar, appointment only locations around the country. Initially, Joe’s trunks were just meh. Some good stuff, a lot of returns.

Then Joe met Derek. Derek was in the Washington DC location (where we lived) and understood what Joe needed. Derek was also willing to push Joe juuuuuuust a little bit beyond his sartorial comfort zone. More colors, cooler socks…you get the idea.

Early on, Joe and Derek bonded over root beer. Derek made a point of always having root beer on hand when Joe came to shop.

Nice touch. Derek!

Simply by having root beer on hand, it showed Derek was thinking about Joe in a personalized way, before he even arrived.

That alone is an idea worth stealing.

But it gets better.

With our recent move out of the DC area, Derek and Joe didn’t get as much opportunity to meet up. That could potentially mean losing a good customer. Recently, Derek sent Joe a trunk of personally selected clothes for Spring. A few days later, a six-pack of root beer arrived in the mail with this note:

Wow. That’s classy! Joe felt so appreciated and also felt bonded to Derek, despite the distance.

Does that mean you should buy your VIP customers root beer? No!

Here’s what’s so genius about the root beer, and why I think you should steal this idea for your VIP customers IMMEDIATELY.

Derek’s gift was personal, meaningful and timely. It came across like the gesture of a friend, and not just a sales move. When you can cultivate a relationship with your VIP customers, good salesmanship simply comes across like friendly outreach.

Do they teach that at Trunk Club? Or is Derek naturally tuned into cultivating real relationships with his best customers? I don’t know…but I do know this.

A six-pack of root beer cemented a business relationship that could have otherwise faded away.

How are YOU creating systems for personal, meaningful VIP connection across your company?