If you love a great deal, then there’s a stop on the road from LA to Vegas that’s almost as imperative as a gas fill up. That’s right, go on past that ghost town detour, resist the urge to stop for milkshakes in Yermo… hey, you might even pass up the chance to eat in a train caboose at the eccentric McDonald’s in Barstow. You’ve got some serious shopping to do at the outlet mall!

Our Favorite Stop on Interstate 15

So you’d better bet that my wife and I stopped our Las Vegas locomotion just long enough to have a look see. That’s how they get you, anyway. There you are stopping for gas, then you ponder all that name brand signage you just witnessed coming off the off-ramp. Next thing you know you’re pulling into the outlet’s parking lot instead of back on the 15.

Opting-in at the Outlets

While my wife ran off to the Coach store to wrestle for purses from the quite literal busloads of wealthy international tourists, I slipped into the Lucky Brand Jeans store to see about replacing the shorts arsenal that mysteriously no longer fits as well as before my wedding. And though it would be twenty minutes before I jotted my name on an opt-in form, I was on the email list from the moment I walked in the door.

They Had Me at “Hello”

As soon as I walked in, there was this nice kid folding shirts right up front. He looked genuinely friendly as he stopped what he was doing to offer a heartfelt “hello.” He didn’t accost me as I wandered about the front of the store, but noticing my pause at certain displays, he offered help at an appropriate time.

“If I can help you find any sizes, just let me know.”

Perfect. I know my style, I know what I like, but I hate sifting through racks trying to find which one actually fits my aging, awkward body. Last thing I need is someone younger than me reminding me I no longer know what looks good. So as I was browsing some t-shirts a few minutes later, he noticed and offered more assistance.

“If you like those shirts, come check out these new ones I’m folding here. We just got them in.”

The Email List Signup Is Just a Period to a Well-Written Paragraph

And from there it all went swimmingly. In succession I was greeted, sized, walked to my dressing room and rang up at the register by the same employee. Yes, there were more salespeople, but the one employee strategy built trust and rapport. So when the last thing he said was “you should sign up for our emails so you can get more discounts,” I was not going to say no. After all the time this person spent on me as a customer, how could I say no to this simple request? Yes, yes, I’ll sign up. You’re like a cousin to me now!

And it really does work like that sometimes. The email list request was only the punctuation to a great overall customer service experience. Take away half of what the kid had done before the list request and I may not be on it. What if there was no greeter? What if people were fake as they smiled or didn’t smile at all? What if a different person handled me at the register and asked about the list? These days, I’m on a lot of lists. I’m looking for excuses to say no but they gave me none.

With that, my wife and I were back on the road again. And though we left with shopping bags from at least five stores, we only ended up on one email list. As we passed the signs in the town of Baker for “Alien Fresh Beef Jerky,” I made a mental note to write about my experience on Monday. Well, it’s Tuesday night now and I’m just getting around to it… Vegas, baby. Vegas.