sly : marketing

Marketing with a smile

Ah. It’s raining.

I love to drink coffee in the rain.

My thermos is full. I start walking.

I live in a fairly small town in Norway. Some say that the streets are empty and when you finally discover a person somewhere, he usually just turns away from you and start walking in the opposite direction.

That’s not true.

Some people call me the obsessive walker. I’ve heard them say it behind my back. That’s probably because they see me everywhere. I walk all day long, mostly because I enjoy new people and I enjoy exploring the scenery and watching the view.

I discover new people and places. That’s what I do.

People are amazing. They always make me smile.

marketing with a smile

I open up my thermos, and the coffee smells so good.

But I want to wait.

I love to look at people and see how they behave. I love to just stand on the corner to see people walk by and I love to smile and nod and see their reactions. Some say that I’m a lone nut, and that I don’t fit in.

That’s not true. I’m just… different.

I’ve been living in a tent for the past five weeks. My beard is big, my hair is long and I feel that people are looking at me in a certain way. They don’t seem to recognize me, at least not the way they used to. I’m at the corner, my favorite one. I have my backpack, it’s raining, and I’m cold. The people working in the shops are walking past me without even looking at my smile. It’s not like.. before.

I’m looking at two people inside a shoe store across the street. They’re talking. The man in the blue raincoat is pointing at a shoe. The tan man in a white shirt is saying something. His face is all indistinct and hazy, without emotions. Nothing seems to happen, until, the customer leaves. He walks towards me.

I give him my biggest smile.

He continues passed me.

I’m looking at two people inside a flower shop. They’re talking. The woman in the red raincoat is holding a rose. She’s talking to the owner of the shop. The owner never looks at me, no matter how hard I try to give her my best smile. The customer shrugs her head and walks away. She walks towards me, and I give her my brightest smile.

She continues passed me.

I’m sitting on the sidewalk, watching people walk by, smiling and thinking about the shoe store and the flower shop. Why didn’t they manage to sell any shoes or flowers to the people in the raincoats?

It’s finally time.

I love to drink coffee in the rain.

I grab my thermos, but as I am looking down on the cup next to me, I start laughing. The shiny objects inside the cop makes me laugh out loud.

– it’s full of quarters.

All I did was smile.

31 responses to “Marketing with a smile”

  1. Bill Dorman says:

    So, you are ‘that guy.’ Did you take my test? Were you off the charts?

    See how much a little ‘different’ can be unsettling to most as they only see the surface you? Sometimes people just can’t see past that.

    I think with the smile if you give the a wild-eyed look too while you are drinking from your thermos should be a good look for you.

    So that’s how you shake the pizza pounds, huh? The walking man…….

  2. Tim Bonner says:

    Hi Jens

    Service with a smile goes a long way! A little bit of charisma, some spark, some enthusiasm and I’m going to listen to what you’re trying to sell me.

    I avoid sales people who look uninterested in shops. If I can wait to get what I want online then it’s probably cheaper anyway in the long run. If not, then there’s always some place else to go and shop.


  3. Wow, very powerful essay on marketing and sociology. Your appearance is your brand and by changing your brand you really affected how people related to you.

    A smile can make all the difference in the world.

  4. Chris says:

    Hi there Jens-Petter,
    Added your site to my RSS feed list a few days ago – really enjoying your work so far! Must say I was not quite sure if this one was fiction or fact! Was definitely a reminder to me that I need to get myself into gear and hit thepavement for a walk
    All the best,

  5. Chris says:

    Now I know you are into fiction – no person can achieve anything of note without Coffee!

  6. Mark says:

    Jen’s, you are crazy!

    And I want to see a picture of your new look.

    Make sure to smile; you can be sure I will be smiling back my friend : )

  7. You made me smile too Jens!

    I was entirely lost in your post, and more so felt like I was smelling your coffee too. πŸ™‚

    Ah…the rains, which is something that I love too and we have rains our end as well, and having a hot cup of coffee is something that I can relate to, especially in such a ‘romantic’ weather. πŸ™‚

    Would love to have a look at you with your full grown beard, and yes, you should keep smiling whether others return your smile or not. I guess that’s something all of us need to remember to do.

    Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

    BTW – I think the CommentLuv plugin isn’t working. πŸ™‚

    • Ah, that was exactly what I was trying to do. This post was all fiction, but I was trying to show the importance of a smile πŸ™‚

      Thanks a lot for your kind words, and I need to take a look at CommentLuv. Thanks a lot for letting me know.

  8. Adrienne says:

    I can see you smiling all day Jens because you’re just a very happy guy. Heck, I would have said hello and how are you today! I’m weird like that and according to Bill’s test, I’m VERY weird.

    I love your stories Jens… Love them. πŸ™‚


  9. Rahman says:

    You and I share the habit of walking some distance everyday. It really helps me to contemplate and make my business strategies. Now, combined with “smile”, it certainly helps a lot more.

    A french expat with Canadian passport living somewhere else on this planet told me once, “You always win whatever you want if you’re the first person to smile, because others think you’ve surrendered to their powerful character.But, this breaks the ice between you and they stop being hard on decisions about you. The result: you get what you want!”

    He’d learned this lesson hard as a non-local living in other countries. Today, he’s one of the most famous ones in his career in the world, but he still keeps smiling.

    Rahman Mehrbay
    TraveList Marketing Blog

  10. Jack says:

    I drink enough coffee for both of us, it is liquid gold. A good cup of coffee will give you a smile that melts glaciers. πŸ˜‰

  11. Lee says:

    Hi let’s start with people watching I love people watching. And with coffe can’t be bad. Not quite so sure about the rain though. Will definately agree about smiling no one does it enough. And I am convinced some people are allergic to it? There we go every one to there own though

    Good read thanks lee

  12. Awesome post! You can win more friends with a smile than a frown

  13. Mei Mayore says:

    A smile is the simplest yet the most effective marketing tool that we can use to attract mote clients and customers to our business. Sometimes a little courtesy and simple smile can enliven the mood of people around you.

  14. Nina Corales says:

    Your simple smile can magnetize the attention of people especially your target audience. Customers feel more delighted and satisfied when dealing business with happy people. πŸ˜€

  15. Vincent says:

    A smile can really help put people at ease especially in situations where anxiety is running high.

  16. Elaine Salt says:

    Wow! It is another marketing strategy to attract people and smile is a power tool to get a great mood for you client. Clients will feel light whenever dealing with them with smile and feel comfortable while talking with you.

  17. Vincent says:

    When I’m buying something, I don’t want to talk to a salesperson that looks at me as a burden. A smile and pleasant treatment makes a world of difference.

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