By Jim McCarthy Jun 15, 2011 0 comments

“Marketing To Your Own Team”

A while back, the remarkable Andrew Warner of Mixergy asked me to do a long interview with him for his site, and I agreed. It was a ton of fun.

Then a couple days ago, someone at the 37Signals blog picked up on a specific comment I made and extended it into a larger point. Here’s the snippet:

Jim McCarthy, the co-founder of Goldstar, talks about his days working at Noah’s Bagels and recalls a corner cutting moment that revealed a deeper change in the culture there:

The culture of Noah’s began to change…There was a point where the management of Noah’s said, “Only 7% of our customers keep kosher.” But having kosher in the store means we can’t have a ham sandwich or even a turkey and cheese sandwich. So the logic went, “OK. If we lose the 7%, because we’re not kosher, we’ll replace it by selling these other things.”

I remember at the time thinking, “That’s not how it is going to work,” and saying, “That’s now how it is going to work,” and it did not, in fact work. Because you’ve taken the 7% of people who love you, think of you in a way that brings goose bumps to them, and told them to, “Go to hell.” You’ve told them to leave your store.

And more importantly, you’ve said to the employees, “Remember how we used to stand for something other than just selling bagels and cream cheese? We don’t stand for that any more.”

It’s long, but I’ll embed the interview here if you want to watch it.  (The embed looks a little fussy, so if it fails, go here to see the video instead):

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