What a great idea! After a trip to San Diego, my wife and I passed by a California Pizza Kitchen on our way home and decided to stop. “I haven’t been there for a long time,” I remarked, “and I wonder how they’re doing in the climate?”
The food was fine – Pepsi quality still, not terrific like the early days. But, the place was clean, the service fast, and the people polite. That makes for a fairly winning combination in my book. Still, it wasn’t until we were paying the bill that I realized someone with some talent was working in marketing.
Our server appeared at the table with a yellow card. “Here is your ‘Don’t Open it’ card.” It almost guarantees that whomever receives it will return to CPK for another meal. It’s really a terrific idea – here is how it works:
After you dine in at a CPK, you receive a yellow card that proclaims, “Don’t Open it!” If you open the card, the content is worthless. If you return to CPK (at least one day later), the manager will open the card and there is a 100% guaranteed gift inside. It could be a free meal, or a year’s worth of frozen pizza pies, or perhaps $50,000. Every card is a winner. Ordinarily, I might have said, “not bad. We’ll try this again in a few months,” or whatever. Now, thanks to the “Do Not Open Me!” card, I will be back… just make the check out to…