Beyond the Horizon


Happy Holidays:

Two recent happenings reminded me, yet again, of the importance of experiences.  Let me know what you think and how they relate to your world?

A couple of months ago I attended an Earth, Wind & Fire concert.  The event was at a local amphitheater – Viña Robles – that seats ~ 3,000.  We were on about the 15th row; just left of center stage.  Bet 90% of the seats were sold, so it was a pretty full house.

I was never a die-hard fan, but these were tunes from my college days and they played every, single, frigging one you could think of.  And, Dan Bailey (one of the two original band members) at 67 years young hit every high note like he was in the finals of The Voice.  Still cannot quite believe it.  Simply a very fun, enjoyable evening!

What is it about live performances that are so compelling?  I continue to ponder that fact.  Sure, the “entertainment” (show, song, reading, lecture, whatever) has to be of interest, but it seems to me the “shared experience” is every bit as meaningful.

We were not experiencing the wisdom of crowds, but more like a shared sub-conscious or a collective electricity.  Whatever enjoyment we might have expected was “amplified” thanks to our 3,000 fellow concert-goers.

Everyone has had similar feelings and reactions and I'm sure you could cite many like performances or sporting events or shows.  Earth, Wind & Fire was terrific ~ they were terrificer because of our live and shared collective consciousness!

My most recent favorite –

Two weeks ago, while at home finishing up leisurely Friday evening dinner and watching television with my bride, I got a call from Madeline’s Restaurant and Wine Shop, the best distribution partner I have with my Caldera Cuveé wine. I’ve encouraged local merchant partners to call me if one of their patrons was interested in learning more or meeting the wine maker and to their credit, they called to see if I could come by and do just that?

My expectation was such a call would be a complete “win-win”, but this was the first time it happened.

There were two gents sitting at the tasting bar with an open bottle of Caldera Cuveé in front of them, so I introduced myself as the wine maker.  We talked food, we talked wine; we talked life in Cambria and about Fresno where they were from; then, unsurprisingly, we talked some more about wine.

One was in the television production business, yet had a catering hobby business – he used the name “Manos de Oro” to promote his efforts.  With that moniker, he must be good.  Turns out there’s a chance I’ll find out since I agreed to scoot over to Fresno for a “to be determined” fund-raising dinner.

This was much more than a “win-win”:

  • Madeline’s wins.  They acted on my offer and created a unique customer experience.
  • I believe the customer would call it a “win” since the tasting room experience had to have exceeded expectations.
  • He also happened to buy a case of Caldera Cuveé!
  • Caldera Cuveé wins since we sold more wine, supported a fantastic retail partner, made a new friend and might have a special event to pour at in ’18.
  • Everyone had fun – THAT’S what gets talked about!

From a purely practical standpoint - While I cannot confirm this (yet) I suspect the experience is what sold the case of wine.  I’ll bet Manos de Oro will read this and confirm it wouldn’t have happened had I not abandoned my footy slippers and journeyed in to town.


So, let me ask you:  What are you doing to make sure customers and colleagues have positive experiences?

I’m NOT asking rhetorically!  I’m asking and want you to share your ideas and efforts so I can include them in next month’s newsletter.  It’d be superb if collectively we can generate a LENGTHY list, so help out, would you?  What ARE you doing?

Happy Holidays and Thanks!

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