Parking Reserved For Employees

Photos of Raul Colon Web Developer Puerto Rico

While visiting my favorite vegetarian (and probably only) cafeteria in my hometown of Ponce, I always have a  huge issue with trying to find parking. First, it is located in an area of Ponce which is not the safest place to park your car and second they have few parking spots in there lot.

What does not make sense to me  is that one of the employees or better yet the owner has a parking spot right next to the entrance. I really enjoy the food they make at this cafeteria since it is vegetarian with Puerto Rican’s flavors.

They serve a small niche which no one else serves and on most occasions I feel they miss out on taking care of their loyal customers. I guess it is the mentality of having a monopoly on ready-made, vegetarian food and products which I can’t find anywhere else in the southern part of the island.

After reading Social Media ROI: Managing and Measuring Social Media Efforts in Your Organization (Amazon Affiliate link) from my friend Olivier Blanchard, I really think they could do a lot better with these three items better know as FRY (Frequency, Reach, Yield) which @thebrandbuilder speaks about in his book.

If they decided to focus on customers they would be able to make the most out of FRY .

Frequency : If the owners of this place made it easier for you to find parking like giving up that extra spot near the entrance to there customers, they might increase the Frequency of visits. Everytime I feel like having lunch or buying my vegetarian products from them, it becomes a hassle since I have to go hunt for parking when the owner’s parking spot is empty.

Reach : When you send the message that you take care of your customers, they will reach out to their contacts and share there experience. I could have written about them using a different approach by sharing how great they are. Putting a positive spin on the post, would have reached many of you who read this blog and piqued your curiosity to stop by the cafeteria.

Yield : When I have to park far away or when I have to wait on the cashier to charge me, I end up either not buying items or grabbing just what I needed. This makes it a lost opportunity for them because I end spending less money. If I have more time or felt more comfortable visiting them, I might spend more money.

I am sure that if the owners started thinking as a customer who could not find a parking spot and left, they would probably remove the sign!

What is more important as a small business owner having perks for yourself or passing them on to your customers? Any Thoughts?



  1. Gabriele Maidecchi on April 11, 2011 at 10:29 am

    I can see your point Raul, I know what you mean and generally I’d tend to agree. I have been forced to park my car 20 minutes from my office for 8 years and now that I can park in front of the new one, I am not sure it’s something I’d live without :p Jokes apart, truth is in the middle I guess, having some perks for your own is good, as is letting your customers take advantage of them.
    In your specific case, I guess I’d give up and let people use that parking.

    • Raul Colon on April 12, 2011 at 4:32 pm


      I see how there are some times where privileges are earned. For example if you are in a corporate facility I think those benefits are ok but not when your customers can’t find parking because the owner wants easy access.

      But we are on the same page. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Prometeo on April 11, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    A few years ago when I was in the University some collective bargaining gave all the parking lots near the academical buildings to the employees. The students had to park on a far away spot and walk 10 minutes or wait for a trolley that took a lot of time between trips. I never understood the reason why the gave the best parking lots to the employees and not the PAYING students. that made me hate their union a little.

    As a customer I like to be treated good and feel at ease on a place. If they mistreat me I’m taking my business elsewhere and tell them the reason.

    • Raul Colon on April 12, 2011 at 4:33 pm

      I do the same I will probably not be visiting that place again. Thanks for always sharing your information and your example is very similar to mine.