If you have ever had the chance to peruse the aisles of Whole Foods you know that you are instantly and magically transported to a feel-good place, with smiles, soft music, attentive staff, and store design that accommodates their market to a T.
For a good long while before Amazon got involved Whole Foods was expensive. It still is on the pricier side. And while there is something to be said about the quality of food you aren't paying for just the cost of food. You are paying for the whole experience.
From the smoothy bar at the entrance to the smiling workers to the butchers who know love and enjoy their work, (ask one which one you should get and watch them go to work on the best select dry aged rib eye your mouth can ever dream. And they will go to work with reckless abandon finding the perfect steak. I've done it tons of times.
From the moment you walk into the moment you leave, from everyone you meet, the way the store is arranged, the selection, to the decor and the design of their stations, down to their carryout bags. Every T is dotted, and i is crossed.
I also live around the corner (about 200 feet) from an Acme. Now Acme is excellent when you need some stuff, they have everything and then some. They are a reliable store with a lot of things.
The experience is lacking. Most of the people who work there look tired, bored, or unhappy. They do not interact with you unless you ask them a question and often it's like you asked them to carry you on their back (which I just asked for marrow soup bones - you have em or not simple answer...sheesh)
Whole food is a 15-minute drive, and Acme is 1.5 minutes. I still shop at Whole Foods mainly. Why?
The experience is better at Whole Foods and, the culture attracts like-minded people.
It is for People who care about eating healthy, grass-fed meats, organic foods at a premium price. I know it's going to be more expensive and we do shop at farms in the summer and fall months but we live in the Northeast and those other seasons not much grows.
I can quickly drive 1 minute to Acme. I continue to go to my little favorite place which I call the Shire (Like Frodo Baggins from LOT) because it's quaint it makes me feel good when I go there. It makes me FEEL something.
Notice in this image Acme sells offers, while Whole Foods sells an experience.
Both of these pamphlets are basically sales material but one is all about the price, and the other the cost is small and often not even there, it's about the service, the culture and it' knows exactly what to say to their consumer that resonates with them.
Too many times entrepreneurs focus on the now, need leads now, need money now, need answers now, but to what expense? To what detriment later?
Acme will never have the loyal following Whole Foods has. Because Acme has no real culture, it's a commodity dealer. Whole Foods will grow and grow because it has an idea behind it The worlds healthiest grocery store.
Cultivate what your culture your business means to you, and others and then make moves with your branding your marketing and your online presence from that space.
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