Surprise & Delight Campaigns: Effective, Emotional, and Compelling Acts of Marketing Kindness

Surprise and Delight Campaigns

Surprise and delight campaigns can give your holiday marketing an authentic, heartfelt edge — but only if they’re done correctly. Like all great marketing initiatives, they need to align with your brand, internalize your values, and be genuine. Don’t just do it for the likes (or, as we call them, the vanity metrics).

Surprise and delight campaigns work by giving back to customers. They build brand loyalty and can create new fans. Often, especially around the holidays, people like to watch feel-good videos. They want to watch unsung heroes or the ‘average Joe’ be appreciated just for being decent people, it can instill faith in humanity and will position your brand as being on the customer’s side, so to speak.

Then, social media sharing gets your message out into the public eye. It may be a good idea to increase shares for exposure, you can do this through contests or campaigns.

Save-on-Foods & Going the Extra Mile

Save-On-Foods (SOF) came to our team with the desire to ‘surprise and delight’ their customers. They asked each of their SOF locations for a story about how they ‘go the extra mile’  for their customers. One story stuck out.

The SOF in Campbell River told a story about how Richard was more like family than a customer. He “comes in like clockwork, on Monday and Thursday” to grocery shop. As he is visually impaired, Richard needs a bit of assistance with his groceries. The staff at Campbell River’s SOF give him a helping hand with picking out his groceries. Over the years, they’ve gotten to know Richard, stating that he is a big part of the community in a number of different ways.

With our help, SOF filmed Richard’s ‘surprise and delight’. He was presented with $2500 in gift cards, 50,000 More Rewards points, and a few party platters for his choir’s Christmas concert. Needless to say, Richard was both surprised and delighted.

The Mechanics

The campaign worked on a few levels. Most importantly, it was authentic — by having SOF ask their staff, the people who are interacting every day with customers, for stories they ensured that they were telling genuine and true stories.

This campaign also aligns with SOF’s brand. They’re rewarding a loyal customer with More Rewards points and free groceries, and also giving back to their community by providing for a local choir’s Christmas concert.

We then asked SOF’s audience to nominate someone who they think goes the extra mile in their own community. Then, those individuals are rewarded with $250 in free groceries.

The campaign is a prime example of how effective surprise and delight campaigns can be. It engages the SOF audience, gives back to their community, and genuinely spreads joy.