Hello. My Name Is . . .

There is one major issue with service provision in today’s world. Monotony. In an effort to streamline the time a consumers spends waiting, every company is employing the latest and most effective service model. There’s just one issue with this. When everybody does the same thing, no one stands out!


In order to create long lasting, brand loyal customers, it is necessary to give them an experience to remember. Whether it is at a coffee shop, a cinema, a shoe retailer or buying a ticket, if the service is memorable (in a good way) then your audience will continue to return. However as organisations develop more efficient ways to avoid any imposition on their customers’ lives, these meaningful service experiences disappear.

But all hope is not lost in this difficult 50/50.

I was at Starbucks yesterday purchasing a coffee and I noticed a very clever new way to add some extra value to the service.

In an organisation where consistency forms the centre of its offering, it is difficult to develop this personalised relationship with consumers compared to the independent coffee shop. The aim of the service experience is to get you through the door, up to the counter, paying for your beverage, waiting quietly and politely around the collection bench and then back out the door. But there is one person little addition to this efficient service model. The name tag.

Unlike most large organisations which supply employees with the standard cookie-cutter ‘insert brand logo and employee name here’ design. Starbucks has used this humble piece of plastic to tell a story to consumers. Instead of being screen printed, employees write their own name tag. Not only are they unbranded but they also feature the employee’s handwriting.

You need something to look at while waiting for your coffee and these individualised name tags provide that opportunity for the consumer to develop a personal connection with the barista despite the efficient service paradigm. Plus they are memorable. Some people have beautiful handwriting. Others aren’t quite as calligraphic. But none the less they tell a little story about the employee you will be liaising with today.

It may not be much, but it is often the little things that make the most difference to the customer’s experience creating that personalised, memorable service that will keep them coming back!