Tag Archives: food

Rooting for Foodzie

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Do you have a secret recipe for the best salsa ever but can’t seem to sell it on that e-commerce website your niece made you for $500?

Is your aunt Kate’s spiced pear butter ready for the big time?

Until now, there has been a serious gap between rocking a booth at a farmers market and getting shelf space at Whole Foods.

Enter Foodzie.

In their words,

We are an online marketplace where you can discover and buy food directly from small passionate food producers and growers. We are a part of a bigger mission, to help change the way people eat. Our small piece of that mission is to help the small food producers across the country find customers and grow their business. We believe that instead of a small number of large food companies there should be a large number of small food companies. We’re a bit obsessed with good food and passionate about connecting those that like to eat it with the people that make it.

Foodzie handles credit-card processing and tax calculations for producers, and supplies prepaid shipping labels to the makers of such items as salami, apricot jam and ‘single malt scotch dark chocolate bars.

In return, Foodzie takes 20% of sales. (Explaining the math to aunt Kate should be pretty easy.)

They started in Colorado but recently moved to San Francisco and now Silicon Valley legends like Digg’s Kevin Olson are stopping by for tours.

Foodzie identified a gap in the marketplace and filled it. Now they’re filling stomachs and the pocketbooks of artisan producers all over the country.

I for one, hope they succeed.

Where should we Tweet tonight?

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Everyone is worried about Twitter’s business model. Will they last? How will they make money?

Kogi isn’t worrying. The Los Angeles-based roving Korean-style taco vendors are using Twitter to improve their own business model.

Since the cultishly popular Kogi BBQ trucks are mobile venues, they use Twitter to broadcast the location and menu items to their legion of fans.

Recent Tweets from Kogi:

Heads up guys! Kogi Roja will be at The Brig in Venice @ 11 o’clock!

KOGI SPECIAL! Korean Burger w Chile Salted Watermelon! @ ALL LOCATIONS!

Kogi is in Santa Monica @ Bergamont Station @ 2525 Michigan Ave. SM. Santa Museum of Art. OPEN TO PUBLIC.

Kogi’s food is cheap, unique and fun, but adding scarcity to the equation ensures something else: the thrill of the chase. Kogi’s trucks tweet their next location and before long, the line looks like the picture above. When the masses are served, the Kogi truck packs up, tweets a new location and by the time they arrive, the line is waiting.

The customers line up before Kogi gets there. What a great business model. Even Steve Jobs can only pull that off once a year.

And like another popular Californian fast food institution used to do, Kogi keeps some of the menu items reserved for ‘insiders’. Right on the trucks, Kogi’s menu lists a few items, including tacos and burritos stuffed with Korean short ribs, spicy pork, chicken and tofu. But Kogi’s Twitter feed lists even more.

This doesn’t have to be limited to Kogi and fast food. Next time I find some perfect tomatoes at the Union Square Market, I can tweet the location and the vendor and add the hashtag #tomatoes.

Let’s all stop worrying about Twitter’s business model. Instead, think about how Twitter can improve your business model. The possibilities are endless.

Want to be on the list?

Take it from Danny Meyer, famed NY restaurateur who has redefined the meaning of customer service for the restaurant industry.

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You don’t need to know the chef since middle school.
You don’t need to eat there four nights a week for a year.
You don’t need to tip the maître d’ $100.

You do need to be sincere.

If you loved the dish, ask to meet the chef.
If you loved the service, tell your server (and their manager).
If you loved the entire experience, tell the owner.

And make your next reservation on the way out. By the time you return, you’ll be on the list.

Sincerity wins again.