Give Away Something Helpful

Recently I got winter tires put on. Once they were done, I asked, “So you just put the old tires in the back of the van?”

“No, we put them in storage,” the person helping me said.

I frowned, “And you’re going to charge me for that?” I hadn’t agreed to anything of the sort.

“Nope, it’s free storage.”

And suddenly this company has my tire business for the rest of the vehicle’s life. They have made themselves extremely sticky as a tire service provider.

When I go to change out of my winter tires, where am I going to go: This tire shop of course. They have my tires. When I recommend a tire shop to someone else, who will I recommend? This tire shop. They give away free tire storage while everyone else charges for it. And on top of it all, they have relieved a huge pain-point for me. I don’t have to struggle twice a year to lug my tires from the shed to the vehicle for the tire switch-over. When I need a change made, I’ll just call them up and get my tires changed.

This is what every business should be doing. Find something that other people are charging for — something that solves a huge pain-point. Then give it away for free. Heal the pain-point when your customer is paying for something already. The customers will flock to you. They will remember you solving their problem, and they will pay you for the service that they already were willing to pay for.

Don’t try to make up the cost by over-charging on the service that people are buying. Customers will see right through that. Just give something helpful away. You will create sticky customers who spend far more at your shop than if you solved their problem and made them pay for it.