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How Cookies Created a Customer Connection for Lexus

If you give a mouse a cookie… well, you know the rest. How about if you give a four-year-old a cookie? The answer is obvious: he's going to accept and chomp it down happily. Seems like a silly, short story, but how about when a Lexus employee gives a four-year-old a cookie? This micro-interaction had a significant impact on one customer's perception of Lexus.

It may seem obvious; a luxury experience, by definition, is supposed to surprise and delight guests. When you hear customer success stories from brands, they typically include that "wow" moment where an employee went above and beyond expectations. But what about the less publicized stories? Moments that employees can create that are quiet, personal, and memorable for the small group that was involved.

A brand's ability to make a powerful impact starts with a culmination of these small moments. Individual experiences that a consumer will remember and share — a moment as seemingly minor as giving a cookie to a four-year-old.

The Brand-Defining Moment

Caleb is a four-year-old car fanatic. While walking along the streets of New York with his mom, they stumbled across an event that was being hosted at an immersive cultural space called Intersect by Lexus. The Lexus team was busy hosting an intimate group of consumers for a driving experience. Caleb noticed the signage and bounced through the door. The team greeted him with a friendly welcome.

Caleb enthusiastically asked about all of the vehicles that were lined up, and without hesitation, one of the Lexus team members took him out to watch the participants load up, explained what was happening and what types of vehicles they were driving. His mother said that Caleb was obsessed with cars, so the team member grabbed an extra participant badge for him to wear around his neck to make him feel official. They then brought him some cookies in a Lexus napkin and told him that he was welcome to visit Intersect any time.

After spending a few minutes at the event, Caleb gave the team a big hug and grabbed his mom's hand. She was a little teary-eyed and told the group that Caleb has autism, and they had just made his day so special.

How Did this Moment Craft a Brand Experience?

For Caleb and his mother, that experience had nothing to do with purchasing a product. The moment was about the team members living the brand's purpose and capturing an opportunity to enhance a consumer's experience, absent that consumer purchasing their product. Sometimes it's not just about making the sale.

This small gesture created a lasting memory for a tiny super fan and his mom. Caleb's absolute joy and gratefulness expressed by his mother will leave a lasting impression on the team, one that reinforces the importance of small but valuable interactions and moments with consumers.

It could be a cookie, a high-five, or a small conversation. Interactions with a brand don't start or stop with a purchase. Truly passionate team members can effortlessly live out your brand's message when they believe in the mission. A cookie can make all the difference.

What touch points on your customer journey could be enhanced by small and thoughtful gestures?