Saturday, August 12, 2006

Blank building hides customer experience bonanza

San Francisco, CA: One evening I was walking around the Embarcadero, looking to have some dinner. The Embarcadero is the business and banking district, so much of it closes down at night. I was walking past the Ferry Building, which is a historic building on the water, with a large, blank facade. Streams of commuters were hurrying into its two entrances, but nothing beckoned me in.

Then this small sign caught my eye, and on a whim I decided to see if the farmer's market had anything to offer.

I walked in to an explosion of music, food, kids and families, beautiful produce... it was astonishing! How could I have known, from the outside, what a great experience it offered?

If the vendors and sponsors of this Farmer's Market are wise, they will work on festooning this building with large, fun signage, as I'm guessing I'm not the only person who has no idea this is in there.

Tip of the day: Don't assume customers know you are there. Your business should telegraph its existence from a half a block away.

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