Serve so that they tell others.

Posted on April 16, 2010


This past week I had the opportunity to dine at a small family Thai restaurant with a friend, Sila Thai Restaurant (FoodSpotting link).

It is a new restaurant and I had heard good things from others who “had” to tell me about it after they ate there.

So I had to try it out myself.

There wasn’t a whole lot of space but they did a nice job of decorating without going too overboard with that cheap Americanized Oriental feel, if you know what I mean. Which is to say that the single dining area was tastefully decorated. Tables were all set simply but with enough care to set the restaurant apart from the chains which often leave me feeling more like cattle being led to the trough.

As it happened this day, there was just one of other couple in Sila Thai and one waitress.

When we entered we were immediately greeted by a young woman who happily told us to pick a spot anywhere. Which we did, but she did something very important by greeting us quickly and with such a positive attitude. She put us at ease. When a customer walks into a new place a good many feel a sense of being out of place and in unfamiliar territory. So nervousness can be a factor and when the restaurant is practically empty that just multiplies whatever feeling with which the customer walks through the door. And I have to admit when I first walked in the emptiness of the restaurant wasn’t lost on me and the question why popped into my mind as it was around the dinner hour. But the young woman’s actions quickly but me at ease, plus I remembered that this was a new restaurant.

Once we were seated and comfortable she gave us menus and proceeded to wait upon us.

Throughout the meal she engaged me and my friend in friendly banter and even joked with me when she brought my meal. I watched her do the same with the other table of customers who were regulars from what I could tell from the overheard conversations. I got the sense that the guests were also there for the relationship that was being built with the waitress and for the food. The chef was fabulous at blending wonderful spices and flavors.

I left knowing I would return because I was made to feel welcome. She did all she could to make sure that everything was to our tastes and kept our glasses full. Of course you may say this is because we were the only people there. Well, yeah we were. But I don’t think that would have mattered whether we were one of two tables or one of six. Sshe had the mindset to serve. And that will bring me back.

In fact I left the restaurant wanting to set up a Fan Page on my Facebook account. And that is the feeling with which you want your guests to leave your restaurant. That is branding at it’s best.

When that happens they will spread the word and you can fan that flame with our proven marketing tool at