This is a guest post from Jay Baer — social media and content strategist and author of “Youtility: Why Smart Marketing is About Help not Hype.” See the original post this is adapted from and more like it on his Convince & Convert blog.

When I shot this episode of Jay Today (my thrice-weekly, three-minute video show on business, life, and social media) I was in beautiful Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, on the annual Convince & Convert Team Strategic Planning Session. Each year we gather the whole crew together in this giant house and spend two days figuring out our game plan for the next year (and two days drinking margaritas).

On my way out to the session this year, I had a remarkable experience with Delta. I had previously ripped on Delta on a different Jay Today episode called “Your Customers CAN Handle the Truth” for how they messaged their new plan to Platinum Members and Gold Members about their mileage program.

But sometimes a brand can win back your heart.

On the way out to the retreat, I was flying with Alyson, my wife. (our team members all get to bring a +1 to the annual retreat, and we had 20 people in the Casa de Convince & Convert this year).

So we were flying out to Mexico, and were in Atlanta making a connection. I’m boarding the flight, and they scan my boarding pass. “Oh, Mr. Baer, thanks so much for being a Platinum Member.” Then they scanned her boarding pass and say, “Oh, Mrs. Baer, I just want to thank you for allowing your husband to live on our planes. Sometimes the wives get ignored, but I just want you to know how much we appreciate you.”


Talk about something that really changes the way you feel about an organization! It just makes your day. Two lessons in this for me.

1. It’s the little things that count.

Take a look at your organization and find ways to do little, tiny things like that that don’t cost anything other than time and want to that make a huge, huge difference in the attitudes of your customers and prospective customers.

2. Allow your team members to work off-script.

There was no email from corporate saying, “Hey, when somebody comes in who is the wife of a Platinum Member, say this.” It’s just something that somebody felt they should say, and those are the things that actually have the greatest impact on your organization and on your customers. It’s the unplanned moments that come out of the head of your employees that can have the biggest impact.

About Jay Baer

Jay Baer helps businesspeople fundamentally rethink their approach to marketing, resulting in soaring attention, increased sales, and newfound customer loyalty and advocacy. He is a hype-free social media and content strategist and speaker, and author of "Youtility: Why Smart Marketing is About Help not Hype." Jay is the founder of Convince & Convert and host of the Social Pros podcast.

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