Business partnerships, like marriages, start with a courtship, a honeymoon, and then either years of bliss or a torturous separation. Although most partnerships have their own form of prenuptial agreement with ownership arrangements and corporate papers, those can’t prevent turbulence and breakups from occurring.
As Berry Chill founder and CEO Michael Farah implemented his plans to open the first of his three Chicago-area locations, he took a bizarre step for a business yet to open: He set up a Facebook page before ever selling its first treat.
“I wanted to build buzz on the brand,” he says. “I wanted to target a younger audience, and Facebook was an easy way to find our customer base.” His friends initially comprised the majority of his fans, but thanks to strong word-of-mouth, the Berry Chill page had 500 fans before the grand opening.
At an Independence Day parade this year, a Mustang convertible rolled down the route decked out in red, white, and blue—and lots of signage for frozen yogurt chain TCBY. As the car came into view, someone with trays of yogurt samples approached folks watching the parade and offered a taste.
It’s 9 p.m. on a Friday in Hillsborough, North Carolina, and the Cedar Ridge Red Wolves just won their men’s basketball game. Naturally, just as they do with every other home game, most in attendance migrate down the road toward the town’s Bojangles’.
Tommy Haddock, owner of the store, says the crowd is business as usual, as the Bojangles’ is also overrun on Friday mornings before school, when the local high school students stop by to grab breakfast before first period.