Delight is in the Details
In lil downtown Kalamazoo, just a few blocks from my house, is a store full of delight. Rocket Fizz sells candy and soda (or, if you were actually born and raised here, it would be soda pop).
Some of the sugar bombs are retro, like you can find the abba zabbas I ate as a kid. Some of it is just weird, like bacon soda (with chocolate).
You can’t help but chuckle at the whimsy. The chuckle makes you want to take part. You’ll buy something, even if it’s just a candy for a quarter. Even if you’ve sworn off sugar – you’ll get a gift for a friend.
When the cashier rings up your sugar haul, they’ll put it in this bag:
Makes you chuckle, doesn’t it?
This isn’t some plastic bag covered in Thank You Thank You Thank You that’s gonna choke a duck some day.
It’s the kind of bag you post on IG and show off to your friends. Which means you’re advertising for Rocket Fizz for free. Like I am right now.
While some people think the devil is in the details, delight is there too.
The details are where you show off your personality. And personality is what makes you different from every other plain vanilla “competitor” that’s out there.
Details also give you a chance to communicate your values.
Over on my data viz blog, you’ll find a spot to get on my newsletter email list. Here’s what it says:
That “That would be gross” line? Literally *dozens* have people have written to me to say it made them smile. Like, they took time out of their day to write me an email and tell me this. That, my friend, is delight.
I wasn’t trying to be cheeky. When I wrote those words, I was just keeping it real. Those words are my values and my personality.
For me, this is one of the primary reasons that, as an entrepreneur, I don’t outsource much. Other CEOs have definitely advised me to delegate more. Why, they ask, with my hourly rate, am I bothering with the details like the copy on the sign up form?
It’s because delight is in those details. And personality is hard to replicate.
And speaking of replication, you absolutely cannot head right over to your own sign up box and add “That would be gross.” You 100% are not allowed to go get bags printed that say “This is full of vitamins and veggies.”
Because that is not your personality.
If you want to weave more details into your own details, here’s what you gotta do:
Go on a customer journey. Pick a specific task that a typical customer would want to complete, like “Contact the CEO to see if they’re available for a keynote.” Then go through the task process, as if you don’t already know the ins and outs of your website (that part can be hard – get a friend), and look for the places you encounter along the way that could be an opportunity for a little delight.
And keeps your eyes open for places you encounter delightful details in your own day to day, even if it’s entirely unrelated to your own field.
Like, what little things make you smile and endear you just a little more? Email me with some ideas.
For me, it’s the mints they give out at Olive Garden (my kid’s favorite restaurant) at the end of your meal.
The specific way Alamo Drafthouse tells you to turn off your effing phone before the movie starts.
It’s the freebie postcards that come in my Moo order that say things like “You’re better than chocolate cake.”
Take note when you feel delight and then think about the corresponding part of your business and what opportunities you have there to show people who you really are.