Squared for Life: Unusual Donuts Inspire Standout Marketing
Everybody thinks their hometown donut shop is the best. Living in Springboro, my family prefers Donut Haus. The donuts are great, and I truly believe it’s impossible to beat their apple fritters. But this isn’t my hometown donut shop. My actual hometown donut shop does something that none of the local Dayton places do.
I grew up with Square Donuts. In 1967 in Terre Haute, Indiana, Richard Comer, Sr., began making his donuts with a square cutter instead of a round one. People loved them, and still do. The business eventually expanded to Bloomington, Indianapolis, and Richmond.
Don’t misunderstand me; I didn’t grow up eating garbage donuts just because they’re square. They’re really good. Better than any other donut shop I have ever been to. Ever. But also, they’re square!
There are two lessons we can take away from this little donut shop and its success since the mid-’60s.
First, don’t be afraid to add a little something extra or do things a bit differently. Put your signature on your work, especially when it’s easy to fall in line and produce the same stuff over and over. People always appreciate something that makes them look twice. Was it difficult to make donuts square rather than round? Not really. But doing a little extra made them unique.
Second, and most importantly, don’t make the mistake of thinking you can let quality slip because of a gimmick or unique idea. If the donuts weren’t good, they could be any shape you wanted, and nobody would eat them. This donut franchise is now all over Indiana, and it’s not just because of an odd product shape. The quality behind the gimmick holds up. If you gave me a round donut from Square Donuts and a donut of any shape from Bill’s or Donut Haus, I’d pick out the Square Donut easily. Challenge me!
What’s your signature? Is it a color or funny name? Is it a great story or personal quirk? Identify what makes your product special, or add a little something to make it special. And if you can add a sugary glaze to it, do that too.
Did you know there’s a smarter and simpler way to nurture leads who visit your website, receive your emails, and see your ads? What a potential customer is looking for varies depending on where they are in the buyer’s journey. A website visitor could be looking for information to help solve a problem they just started researching, or they could want specific details and prices for products or services you offer.
Spring—it’s a time to start fresh and nurture growth. And speaking of growth, how is your social media performing? Research shows that 52% of social media marketers believe social media positively influences their company’s revenue and sales, so the health of these platforms is certainly important. In fact, key players in the industry are rolling out data dashboards that prioritize the health and quality of your digital marketing efforts. HubSpot’s Email Health Tool and Facebook’s Quality Check help users identify and address underperforming emails or social media ads. If these issues are left unaddressed, companies could be blacklisted—ending up in the eternal email spam folder or banned from the Facebook platform entirely.