Driving into NYC a couple of years back, my mobile phone rang. On the other end was the Customer Services Manager of The Carlyle Hotel, my destination that evening. She begged my pardon for calling without prior notice or invitation, and then asked if I would kindly provide her with my wife's middle name. After a brief pause to puzzle as to the reason, I replied (it's Rae Ida), she thanked me, and Ellie and I continued our journey.
Upon arrival, about an hour later, the purpose of her mysterious query was revealed. Because on the bed, in crisp white linen, were monogrammed pillow cases — Ellie's on her side ("ERIB"), mine ("REB") on the other. I learned later that that particular evening marked the one hundredth time I enjoyed their hospitality. The VIP pillows… a small sign of recognition.
The same arrangement has greeted me on every stay since.
How much did it cost to produce those pillow cases? How much did it buy in loyalty (and now, PR)? Do the math, and ask yourself, "Am I really doing everything possible to recognize and serve my best customers?"