As surprises go, it wasn’t particularly effective. It was telegraphed a day in advance via a text message that went in part:
Hey PTF crew--
I am in need of some time-sensitive information.
There is a prize coming your way if we can confirm an office/unit number and possibly a phone number for someone who will be there tomorrow afternoon to receive a delivery.
It was supposed to be a surprise, but this delivery service is thorough!
Okay, so the Pow! of the surprise was somewhat lacking, but the delight and joy it brought far made up for it.
As a company that gives out over 200 prizes a month, getting one was quite the role reversal. But such is the reward, I suspect, when you treat your public like friends.
One of the credos we’ve always pushed at Play The Future--from Day One, and in every aspect of the business, from in-app questions to social media dealings--is “Talk to the People.”
“Talk” as in true listen-before-you speak conversation.
And “People” as in those you are lucky enough to have play your game, buy into what you’re doing and spread the word on your behalf are actually human beings. Someone’s mom or sister or uncle or brother or son or whatever.
What we’ve discovered by doing this, especially in an age of AI and rampant chatbots, is that a little soul, care and real-speak go a long way.
So cut to 11:45 a.m. at the Play The Future offices--we get the box above with the note that says:
“We predict you will be our valentines.
Love, your top two Futurists,
Stephanie M and Kara S.”
We were floored for two reasons. Getting a gift from PTF players was one, but the fact that these women never knew each other before--and became friends by playing--Play The Future truly warmed our Valentine’s Day hearts.
It’s cause and effect, really. We treat our players like friends and family. We affectionately call them all “Futurists” instead of “customers” or “clients,” and some of our most ardent Futurists have graduated to the next level of closeness and familiarity, a “Team Tomorrow” that gets inside info and helps us make decisions.
So to Stephanie and Kara, thanks for making our day. Your prediction accuracy score is way beyond 100% on this one.
And for the rest of those reading this, how are YOU treating the ones who decide YOUR future?
If they ain’t sending you a gift now and then...perhaps they’re sending you a message.