One of our customers gave an Obama T-shirt to her pastor as a gift. When the pastor wore it, she said it seemed like everyone else in the church wanted to have their own too.
You may not know any national celebrities; but there are plenty of local ones who would be flattered and feel priviledged to help you grow your business this way. Here’s another story of mine from when I was in Jr. High school.
I went to a large Jr. High school (at least it seemed large to me). Like anywhere else, there were a few girls who were really popular; and everyone knew who they were. Since I was too young to get a real job, I found a place that sold really inexpensive novelty items. This is where I bought some weird little furry animals called “moon goons”. I asked two of these really popular girls if they would tell people that they really like these moon goons if I gave them one for free. They both loved the idea; and I gave one to each of them for free.
Within a couple of days, I was filling up my locker with moon goons every morning; and selling everything I could fit into it by the end of the day. In return for a free moon goon, I rented some extra lockers from my friends, and I was soon selling hundreds and hundreds of moon goons every day. You see, moon goons came in different colors; and with slightly different designs. To really stand out, most kids needed as many as they could afford to put on their desks.
This career ended within a couple of weeks when the school administration told me I couldn’t sell these in school any more. I don’t remember exactly how much I was making, but I remember that it was way more than I would have been paid at a regular job…at least for about two weeks.
What ways can you use this same idea to grow your business? Can you get free or inexpensive word-of-mouth advertising when you give something away?