Eat dessert first

“Life is uncertain…Eat dessert first.”

That’s the Tucker’s Ice Cream motto.

Since the 1940s, Tucker’s is an ice cream shop serving Alameda, CA.

If you head over on a Friday or Saturday night, the line loops out the back door.

It’s the ice cream you eat in Alameda.

It helps that they serve – probably – the best vanilla ice cream I’ve ever had.

Everything else is great too.

While the ice cream shop has changed owners, they’ve stayed true to their ice cream.

Old fashioned. Creamy. The way ice cream should be.

They’re located on the main downtown street in an old brick building. The smell of buttermilk waffle cones when you walk in. The aesthetic tells you old fashioned ice cream is served here.

With pictures throughout of the local youth sports teams they support, you can tell they’re active in the Alameda community.

Maintaining a great product. Being involved with the community you serve. It’s the Tucker’s way.

And that’s why Alameda lines up every Friday and Saturday night.

Now, more than ever, we know life is uncertain.

So, let’s do like Tucker’s. Support your community. Eat dessert first.

How do you book a sales meeting?

I got a cold email from a sales rep Friday afternoon.

It was the first cold email and I booked a meeting.

I didn’t book the meeting because the email was particularly well written.

Subject line was generic. Content was generic.

But, it was effective, because I booked the meeting.

Why did I?

I booked the meeting because my colleagues have been speaking about them internally.

Mostly just, “it would be nice to give company x a try”. Really, the comments have been in passing.

Then, the sales reps email lands in my inbox.

I said yes. Off the 1st email.

This is a great example of outbound sales efforts complimenting marketing.

I’ve seen this company’s advertising. I’ve read their blog content. My colleagues spoke about them. Then, I get hit with the cold email.

That’s how B2B deals get started.

Multiple people are involved.

It’s about creating a swell within a company. Getting colleagues to talk. Then, they’re interested enough to chat.

There is nothing creative in this example. It is just building a sales and marketing system, that works together to consistently book meetings and close sales.

It’s as simple as that.


I won’t be the end decision maker, but I will have a use case for the product.

Community engagement with Green Day

The 41st street block party is a street festival in Oakland.

Music, food, art.

For the music, Green Day played a free show for the Oakland community.

Then, for New Year’s Eve, Billie Joe Armstrong and his band The Longshot played a surprise show at the Golden Bull.

A small club in Oakland.

Since they released a new album and were planning a tour – which is now on hold due to COVID – Green Day (prior to COVID) seemed to be warming up for tour by playing small shows in the Oakland community.

If you’re lucky enough to hear about them before they happen (I’m not), it’s a unique experience.

This is community engagement. And Green Day seems to take it seriously.

Not forgetting the community that made them what they are.

How do you engage with your community?

Coffee and great marketing

In Frankfurt, there is a specific coffee you drink.

Wackers Kaffee.

It’s just what you do.

Frankfurt is a finance town. So, if you go around lunch time on a weekday, all the financiers form a line out the door to get their after-lunch coffee.

On Saturday, if you head down to Wackers Kaffee, there is a line out the door of weekend shoppers.

And, any day you head down there around 2 pm, there are people having afternoon cake and coffee. Every table is taken.

Needless to say, it’s always full. It is the coffee you drink in Frankfurt.

And, it’s delicious. The best coffee I’ve ever had. I’m partial to their Cubano roast. It’s smooth and a little nutty. And as an American, it feels a little like you’re drinking contraband.

They’ve been around since 1914.

They’ve survived two world wars and they consistently produce great coffee.

Obviously, to make it that long, you don’t rely on being trendy.

You build relationships with your customers. One at a time. You establish yourself as a valued member of the community. Showing up day after day for decades building your brand.

When successful, that brand leads itself to the holy grail of word of mouth.

That is what great marketing does.

If you’re ever in Frankfurt, I highly recommend stopping by Wackers Kaffee.

Being authentic like Bukowski

He proceeded to drink copious amounts of wine on French national T.V.

It turned into a scene.

Charles Bukowski was in France on a book tour and was being interviewed on French T.V.

His friends and family were embarrassed.

He didn’t apologize.

He wrote about it.

Authentic, raw, and in detail. That’s what Bukowski does. There is no sugar coating in the stories he tells.

Some enjoy Bukowski. Some think he’s a drunk hack.

Regardless, he’s authentic.

At a time in post war industrialized America, where we idolized wholesome Leave it to Beaver life, he brought the raw emotions people actually felt every day.

It’s the everyday life of working-class America that he represents.

Bukowski had no polished, rehearsed highlight reel.

What Bukowski illustrates, is we have a desire for things that feel human. Things that are a little imperfect.

It’s probably why emails that have a typo in the subject line have better open rates. Our instinct tells us a human wrote this.

Sprinkling a little Bukowski style authenticity in our marketing can make us seem human. We become more accessible to our audience.

Like Bukowski, be authentic.