A few weeks ago, a group of us from Full Contact had the pleasure of attending the AdClub CMO Breakfast Series with featured speaker, Jon Olinto, the co-founder and “CMO” (he’s not crazy about the title) of b.good.
As someone who has worked extensively with food & beverage brands and is a limited partner in two Boston-area restaurants, I loved hearing Jon speak about the b.good vision. He wasn’t scrambling to figure out the next deep discount to grow guest counts or create a buzz-worthy new menu item.
He was seeking a way to build a genuine brand community. It’s why b.good talks about food “that comes from farmers, is made by people, and served by family to family.” And, as you might expect, this isn’t an easy thing to do. Still, there were several points Jon made that, I felt, might help in building a community around your brand.
- Get local, get fresh – b.good does a great job of promoting how they are able to trace proteins and produce back to their respective (local) sources. By prominently showcasing the faces and names of their farmers through restaurant collateral around the restaurant, it’s hard to miss b.good’s commitment to fresh, local food – and communities.
- Open up your kitchen – If you have fresh, local food, don’t miss an opportunity to show it off by opening up your kitchen. But, don’t just do it for the food. A recent Harvard Business Review article cited that cooks make tastier food when they can see restaurant guests. Opening up a kitchen can build a valuable (and tasty) connection between chefs and guests.
- Celebrate people – This is critical, and it was one of the messages that rang loud and clear in Jon’s talk. From the people preparing the food to the people eating the food, b.good celebrates people. Jon showed us pictures of farmers in their restaurants, videos of longtime employees making burgers, and slides of fanatical customers engaging with the brand. In short, b.good considers all the people who make up its brand “family” (it’s what they call them). You can imagine what a powerful network of brand ambassadors that can make.
After all, when producers, chefs and guests all feel invested in one another – that’s the stuff great businesses are made of.