Carpe Vinum

Drinking and Thinking

Yvon talks to Marketplace about his new book, The Responsible Company.

Ryssdal: When you started, however many years ago it was, did you ever think you’d be sitting here running a company that’s trying to change the world?

Chouinard: No, absolutely not. I’m not very good at thinking into the future. I kind of live for the day.

Ryssdal: Oh, come on. I don’t actually believe that.

Chouinard: No, I’m not that good at it.

Ryssdal: What’s next then? There’s more, right?

Chouinard: Well, as soon as you leave I’m going surfing.

How to differentiate your specialty retail brand…Sell the fun.

Yeah, work

Rarely do you see somebody outside hiking, trail running, riding, skiing, climbing, paddle-boarding…without a smile on their face (usually, it’s only the people training for a triathlon/Ironman). For retailers, that smiley-face status represents an opportunity for a clear point of differentiation to their customers’ workaday lives: Smiles vs scowls. Wild vs penned. Adventure vs routine. Freedom vs work.

Good specialty retailers are connoisseurs of that differentiated experience that the outdoors represents: The smiles, the wild, the adventure, and the freedom. It is represented in all of the branding they do in and for their store, so that the store is a identified as destination that customers will seek as they search for alternatives to their current, boring norm. 

The brands that these specialty stores sell have to support and celebrate that differentiation story that specialty outdoor is cultivating. These brands have an inspirational founding story that has relevance to the outdoor spirit of risk, reward and action that the outdoor enthusiast can identify with, even when they are at work.

Going for a hike gets the Portlandia treatment. “Get the gear!” infers that maybe we buy more than we really need.

Fixed. theme by Andrew McCarthy