Customer personalisation is key

2017 is nearing and for all the stationery nerds out there like me, that means one thing: a brand new diary. Undamaged, perfect, clean pages.

You might be thinking: but you love tech so why the hell would you get a diary? Use your damn phone! But there is just something so damn satisfying about writing a to-do list every day and ticking it off. Plus, carrying a stylish diary makes you look hella cool (in my books anyway!).

My perfect diary

Trawling through Instagram, I stumbled upon Nathan and Jaynie Johnson’s design store, Blacklist. Immediately I was smitten with their beautiful typography and clean stationery; I followed them instantly.

Recently, a blogger I followed posted a flatlay that included a gorgeous notebook with a black fabric cover and gold foil typography. Clicking to view the tags, I noticed that Blacklist were responsible for this heavenly creation. So off I went to their online store and happened upon my perfect 2017 diary. Daily pages, clean lines, and a colour scheme of black, white and gold. Another added bonus is this beauty is limited edition so you won’t be rocking the same diary as your colleague/friend/person.

But this is not a story about finding the perfect diary.

This is about how packaging, personalisation and making your customer feel a million bucks is key.

So, how did they do it?

Less than a week later, my diary arrived. In regular Australia Post fashion, the box was ugly on the outside, but I was amazed once I opened it. My diary was wrapped securely in Blacklist studio designed crepe paper, packaged in a simple black monogrammed box. My favourite part of it all was the handwritten note. What an experience it was opening that parcel! I honestly couldn’t stop smiling.


Blacklist started in 2008 as a side project and now has over 200 stockists worldwide. Their products are fabulous, there is no doubt. They’ve been featured in ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar and Real Living to name a few. What truly drew me in as a customer was the added touch of a handwritten note and careful, considered packaging.  means there are a LOT of pretty Instagram pictures – basically, free advertising. Check out #blackliststore if you don’t believe me!

The simplest of gestures has ensured I remain, not only a loyal customer, but someone who shares recommendations with my personal network.

It’s pretty genius, right?

  1. I found Blacklist through Instagram and followed them passively
  2. An Instagram post from a blogger directed me to look at Blacklist for a diary
  3. The product was perfect, so I bought it
  4. I posted on Instagram about my new diary
  5. My followers know what Blacklist offer

The impact of word-of-mouth marketing

Word-of-mouth is so powerful and now that we have technology and social media, it has evolved. We are regularly exposed to information and recommendations. McKinsey & Company (2010)  found that experiential word-of-mouth was the most powerful form of marketing. When a customer’s experience deviates from what’s expected (either positive or negative), it would trigger comment or discussion. Uh, TripAdvisor reviews anyone?

This is why understanding your customers’ expectations about their experience is critical. But, exceeding those expectations is what makes a business succeed.

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