In his book Brand Sense, Martin Lindstorm mentions how your brand can have look, feel, sound, and smell. It is an eye opener on things I never knew existed. There are bits and pieces here and there that when put together makes great brands what they are today. An example from the book; the Coca Cola bottle designed in a way that when smashed, it is still recognized as, oh well, a Coca Cola bottle.
The sensory experience is not only theoretical; actually it cannot be more practical. In different occasions I stayed at Rotana hotel series in Dubai. Once you are inside the hotel you cannot mistake the distinguishable aroma in the corridors nor the look of the natural flowers dipped in the water bowel with lit candles beside it. You find this when you least expected it in a derelict connection tunnel between hotel and mall.
So, can this be applied in small businesses? Yes absolutely :-). If you have a bakery shop, why not install exhaust fans to the street to let the “smell” sour outside. Why not to put a small bird house and feed them with bread crumbs (look and sound). Or may be have a small table for two with fresh flowers and a small coffee machine around the corner for the sake of aroma (look and smell). People might not buy coffee or the small table might not generate “revenue” but it will certainly bring up happy memories of loved ones and will add up to the sum of the experience ;-).