Playing With The Big Boys
Over the past 16 months Coulter and I have been going full speed ahead trying to get Quinn Popcorn on the shelves. There wasn’t time to think about competition, to worry about those who could crush what we have been working so hard on. I always joked about them jumping out of the bushes, but I wasn’t really joking per-say. It actually scares me more than I care to admit. (We blanked out the name and company in the above photo…it wouldn’t be right to share any of our customers info without asking!)
So today, when an order from AbesMarket.com came in, I pretty much lost my cool for a solid 15 minutes. After realizing who the customer was I simply refused to ship it, refused to ship the product that we have been working so hard on to one of our biggest competitors. Yes, I could have said their credit card got declined, or shipped them empty boxes, both brilliant ideas from friends, but instead I slipped a handwritten note inside the package. I even used Quinn Popcorn stationary, recycled card stock reserved for buyers, distributors, media, and the like. I also threw a Quinn Popcorn sticker on the seal just for kicks, but mostly to prove a point: We have stickers, we are a real company. (joking.)
When I calmed down a little I started to realize that this is why we created QP in the first place. We wanted to reinvent the microwave popcorn category, we wanted to initiate the change that needed to happen. Quinn Popcorn was born out of the love of food, using “real” ingredients. Turning a synthetic chemical filled product into something healthy, a snack worth sharing and experiencing with family. The good thing about all this is that maybe this huge conglomerate is going to follow our lead. They might learn that just because you have access to harmful materials, chemicals, and modified ingredients, doesnt’ mean you actually have to use them; learn that there are other options out there, better for consumers, better for the planet. If we have convinced them of this, then we have accomplished what we set out to do.
Instigating change is a good thing, but sticking around long enough to create lasting effect is a great thing. We knew this day was going to come, It’s just hard when it smacks you in the face. I’m not worried anymore. We are way too determined to be steamrolled. That all said, the very large box is still sitting under my desk. Do I have to ship it? Yes. So, if they are coming to us, coming to learn the secrets of QP, awesome. The Quinn Team is looking forward to seeing what evolves.