Marketing insight from a local CSA

A couple of years ago my wife and I joined a local CSA. She loves to cook and experiment with different ingredients, so the idea of a CSA made sense.

Aside from the produce being amazingly fresh and tasty, what I’ve also noticed over time is how their business model allows for some great marketing and brand building.

Each week, you get your box of fruits and veggies (and we also get eggs). We know that we’re going to pick up this box at the same time at the same place each week. But what’s great about it is the variety and the opportunity for our farmer to surprise us with what he’s able to provide. (This is also one of the reasons that the “monthly box subscription” industry has taken off.)

It’s this anticipation of what we’ll get and what we’ll do with it that keeps their farm top of mind for us. We talk about it to our friends and try to promote them when we can.

Sure, you end up with some stuff you have no idea what to do with, but that’s the point. If you wanted something exactly the same as you had it last week, go to a chain restaurant.

For those of us in businesses that don’t produce commodities, this is a chance to take a look at what we do and see if it’s using a format while at the same time allowing for creativity. If it’s not, it might be time to plant some new seeds.

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