A brand, once well established, is really still sitting at the beginning of the runway. Successful brands realize they need to constantly reinvent and refresh themselves to remain relevant, interesting, and vital to their customers. Thousands of brands vye for consumer attention, and only the ones that matter to the consumer are kept in their fold.
Julie Ganong of Chococoa Baking Company knows this very well. She is part of the husband and wife team that founded the company and reinvented the whoopie pie. They created an updated, rich, gourmet whoopie pie made with premium chocolate and all natural ingredients that has turned an old New England original into a luxurious, special occasion dessert. The Whoopie has been named Best of New England by Yankee Magazine, and featured in Chronicle, O Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, and other national publications. They make 8-10,000 whoopies a week and ship them across the U.S.
Julie believes that all marketing comes down to brand. If you want to maintain a brand that will drive revenue, you must continuously reinvent that brand to maintain customer interest. Once a customer becomes engaged with your brand, they expect it to continually be exciting.
“We reinvent The Whoopie, within our brand standards, every month,” said Julie. “Our strict adherence to the highest quality, all natural ingredients never wavers. But within those parameters we have lots of room to play. For example, during the pandemic we decorated our whoopies with little faces wearing blue masks. They flew off the shelves as hospitals and healthcare providers bought them to say thank you to their staff. It’s a great example of how we can remain relevant and create new interest, all within our brand.”
A brand, well executed, can also support the community. During the pandemic Chococoa Baking Company decided to stay open, and it became a haven for customers. “They regularly told us that being able to come to the cafe was part of their new normal,” said Julie. “But they also trusted us and expected that we would know how to operate within Covid protocols so they would be safe when they came here. As a result, they supported us while we supported them. When the pandemic eased, we didn’t have to rebuild the brand or find new customers. They were right there with us, and we had built loyalty we could never buy.”
Chococoa Baking Company has proven that a brand can be luxurious and community minded at once. It can be adapted for holidays, weddings, special occasions, and even a pandemic. A good brand is versatile, and can be stretched to meet extraordinary situations while maintaining its integrity. The best brands know who and what they are, and what they are not. They are not all things to all people, but they are the absolute best to the audience they seek and their loyal customers.
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