In an episode from season 2 of the Amazon Prime series Fleabag, the titular character is seen working on a busy day at her once mostly empty café. Her sister, dumbfounded asks what has happened, Fleabag explains that she has introduced chatty Wednesdays – After you buy something you need to have a talk with someone who you don’t already know. ”Loneliness pays,” she deadpans.
The idea of chatty Wednesdays in this fictional series is based on an actual program introduced in many independent cafes in the UK after a mother of a young child started to notice strangers around her who seemed lonely and could use an ear. Costa Coffee, a UK chain, introduced the concept in several of its stores.
While many brands are preoccupied at getting people to spend by offering promos or deals, some are forward thinking and are making attempts to meet deep human needs.