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Every company has a personality, and they typically show it through branding, product design, and the people they hire. But personality is about more than the look and feel of a business — it’s what makes you unique, and it’s what gets people to talk about you.

Here are some ways businesses used their personality to inspire word of mouth:

1. They support remarkable employees
2. They show their sense of humor
3. They leave surprises behind

1. They support remarkable employees

At HEB, a grocery chain in central Texas, one employee in their San Marcos store is affectionately known as “the pizza lady” because of her loud “piiiiiiizzzzaaaa” yell, calling people over from across the store to try a sample. Every year, she tries to beat the store record for most pizzas sold in one day — and she beats it every time because her fans spread the word about helping her make her goal. Customers love her, the community loves her, and news outlets love her. She’s not like your average grocery store employee. But instead of seeing that as a bad thing, this store encouraged her, and they’ve been the number-one HEB in pizza sales since 2009 because of it.

2. They show their sense of humor

Talking about the weather is your textbook example of boring. But when the Cecil County Sheriff’s office in Maryland has to share weather conditions on their Facebook page, they spice things up a little with Weather Kitty. That is, they photoshop a friend’s cat into photos for their weather advisory posts. Weather Kitty can be found next to a pile of snow, on the side of a foggy highway, or in a lightening storm. According to the sheriff’s office, since they started this goofy tradition, more people share and like their posts and are quicker to respond to them. Spreading the news of a fog advisory faster is cool. But there’s something more important happening here: Weather Kitty gives the community a great story to tell about their fun, approachable county sheriff’s office.

3. They leave surprises behind

Tesla is a pretty serious company on a pretty serious mission to make electric cars mainstream. But that doesn’t mean their cars are all business. The Tesla S has a “James Bond mode” hidden in its control panel so that the graphic of the car on the screen becomes a submarine car when you hit the right buttons. Easter eggs like these help reenergize conversations about a product. More importantly, they’re a way to bring their fans in on a joke and help them feel more connected to the company’s personality.

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