By Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD
I once received a flier for one of the most bizarre promotions I have ever seen. It was a “Back to School Special” — to have my septic tank pumped.
I hope that it is obvious that I have never listed “pump septic tank” on my back-to-school to do list—and it’s hard to imagine anyone who would.
To make it even more strange is that in order to get the special discount of $25, I need to convince one of my neighbors to have their sewage removed at the same time. I’m not sure if we each get 25 bucks off or if we need to share the savings.
Although connecting this promotion with returning to school is nonsensical, the basic business behind the deal is sound. Tanks on most sewage pump trucks have the capacity to hold the contents of two standard residential septic tanks.
Once the tank on the truck is full they need to make the trip to the treatment plant to “unload.” With the high price of diesel fuel, pumping two septic tanks in the same neighborhood makes a lot of sense and should cut their costs.
So as it turns out, this promotion is a good deal for everyone. It’s just strange to call it a “Back to School” special.
Read more in Peter’s new book, Sticky Customer Service, to uncover helpful customer service tips, encouraging you to do better and celebrating what you do best.
Peter Lyle DeHaan is an entrepreneur and businessman who has managed, owned, and started multiple businesses over his carer. Recurring themes included customer service, sales and marketing, and leadership and management. He shares his lifetime of business experience and personal insights through his books and posts.