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The Spin-cycle Zone

One of the aspects of Customer Experience Architecture that I haven't discussed much on this blog isCaricatures1_3
Corporate Art. My Wizard of Ads partner and friend, Sonja Howle, is an expert in the arena and has a great example of a no-cost way to enhance the Customer Experience on her blog, American Visionaries. Here's an excerpt:
...one of the best (and longest lasting) "art as a tool of Marketing" programs in America was started because a restaurant in New York didn't even have the money to decorate their walls.  (This isn't too hard to figure out, is it?)

In the 1920s two Italians, Pio Bozzi and John Ganzi, decided to open a restaurant on Second Avenue in New York and name it after the region that was home to them in their motherland ... The Parma region of Italy.  The name was heard by the filing clerk as The Palm ... and it was never changed.

They opened on a shoestring.  Their restaurant was close to the King Features Syndicate and many of the cartoonists employed there would pay for their spaghetti lunches with a cartoon drawing on the wall.   So. Popeye, Beetle Bailey, Hagar the Horrible and Batman made appearances on the walls of The Palm.  Later, the King Features artists who became regulars would draw caricatures of the famous and infamous diners of The Palm (to the delight of the diners).

 Each of the walls in the flagship New York restaurant is insured for half a million dollars.  And, the American Cartoon Association wouldn't hold their annual dinners anywhere else.

They realized much later what a brilliant marketing strategy it had become ... all of their 30 U.S. and two international locations open with 200-300 local notables drawn on its walls.  New caricatures are added regularly.  These new walls become a "living mural" of the celebrities of the city ... new and old.

Pio and John didn't know much about art, but they knew what they liked: Happy customers who were having a great time at their place.  - Sonja Howle

Thanks, Sonja!

Okay, so you don't have a supply of talented cartoonists working next door to your business. I bet you have talented customers that would love to participate in a contest for best painting, drawing, or photograph. You could display the finalists in prominent spots throughout your business. Naturally, the participants would want to bring their friends and relatives to your establishment to see their work.

By the way, if you're keeping up, the caricatures on the wall at the Palm are an example of the Architectural trigger for creating effective Word-of-Mouth. Getting customers to participate is the Kinetic trigger.


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