I rode my bike to work, quite a bit, but not every day. My commute was a 29 mile round trip, and my house sat 1400 feet higher than the shop. So, I had about a 45 minute commute to work, and a 1-1/2 to 2 hour commute home. Three or four days a week was a lot of commuting, for me, and I didn't do that often.
I didn't commute too much, once we started riding over to Park Meadows to have breakfast at the original Denver location of Kaladi Brothers coffee. The 25 miles back and forth for breakfast seemed like enough of a ride, coupled with a 10 hour workday.
What was a constant, whether commuting or breakfasting, was the fact that I constantly tried to be an ambassador for the shop. With Scott's blessing, I carried two or three tubes, covering the common sizes you see on the trails around here, and a patch kit. Along with those, I also carried business cards.
Whenever I would happen upon someone who had a flat tire, I always asked if they needed a hand. Many, many times the rider had either no supplies or equipment to fix the flat, no knowledge of how to use the flat kit they did have, or neither. I would stop, fix their flat, note any other adjustments or repairs that they might need, and hand them a business card.
If they offered to pay, I would ask them to come to the shop to do so, so that we could ring it up. Of course, that also had the effect of getting them into the shop, where they might see something they would like to have.
Maybe 50% of the people I helped out actually showed up at the shop, later. But, I know that we sold quite a few bikes to people I had helped out, or who knew someone I had helped. So, for the cost of a few tubes, and maybe being late to work a couple of times a month, we got a pretty good return.
Thing is, I still do the same thing, even though I don't work at a shop. I just hate to see someone stranded on the bike.
Jonny G, Bike Ambassador...