A new Ramen place opened by my house, of which I wrote about a few days ago.
I recently went back a second time because I was so impressed. I decided to go with my mom, which fulfills both my goals of trying new things and spending more time with family.
We had to wait in line, but eventually we got a table and were treated to some delicious bowls of hot Ramen. What I didn’t realize the first time was this place, Kinton Ramen, has one of the most creative membership promotions I’ve ever seen.
Upon finishing my bowl to the last drop, the waitress asked if I wanted to become part of the ‘Kinton Bowler club’. A ‘bowler’ is someone who eats the entire bowl of Ramen leaving nothing behind. I was then given a membership card.
Rather than the Subway club card, which only rewards patrons who ‘buy’ subs, you have to eat the entire bowl, by yourself, just to earn a point. This is genius. Being part of the ‘Bowler Club’ feels more inclusive than just buying a product. There’s a sense of achievement in finishing an entire bowl (many other establishments have a similar reward), and the prizes you get range from free dumplings for eating 10 bowls, a t-shirt for 50 bowls; and for 10,000 bowls you become a VIP and get free toppings for life.
You wont see me scarfing down 10,000 bowls of anything, but the fact that I became so enthusiastic about noodle soup is a testament to how effective this marketing idea is.