Kevin Barchas: Formula for success: Business building in Truckee’s ’peak’ climate

It’s no secret there’s an influx of money currently in the Truckee area and Lake Tahoe Basin. Bay Area folk (and beyond) now flock to our pristine mountain area in droves, bringing their pocket books and bank accounts with them. While inquiries linger over whether we’re reaching our town’s capacity, a different conversation about cohabitating our flourishing city with its imaginable potential hastens by the day. What can locals and incomers do alike to seek common ground and share the place we both love? Let’s start by evening the playing field.

Common sense tells us there must be a shared vision for homegrown Truckee-ites and newcomers both to promote, which also provides for the town esteem. Experience tells us there’s a certain j’nasequaz concurrent to the look and function of said ideas and activity. Conceptually, fulfilling a commercial void and providing an inviting environment in which to do so stipulates steps towards building a successful community. Below, I’m going to outline ideas local business entrepreneurs can use in order to promote their establishments. If you’re trying to magnate your darling cash cow, these tools might help you get started.

Trends: A contemporary craze promotes the idea that T-Town, CA earnestly provides a place for legitimately healthy life choices. When not shredding KT-22, denizens want to cool off with body positive nutrition, cleansing yoga classes, and health forward meal plans. Forecasting the environment and fulfilling needs is an ample way to seek and improve our community. How can we provide in an area where existing culture lacks?

Aesthetic: Although many local businesses feel packed into buildings as old as Honest Abe, a modern décor can solicit your customer’s appreciation for the space your business inhabits. Plenty of room, pronounced lighting and an on-point interior design scheme invoke the type of destination visitors would delight in dropping in on, returning for and sharing with their friends.

Identity: The look of your brand establishes a blueprint for the observer to judge your business proposition on a visceral level. Forward looking marketing helps a customer confirm their decision you’ve got your operation under tight lock and key. A clean, uncluttered image paired equally with backbone delivery on this “promise” cements attention, interest, and trust.

Local graphic designer Spencer Collinson, whose company Visual Stoke has supplied logo design for multiple Truckee entities, believes: “If designing a logo, it’s worth pondering how you want to fit into the community. Take some time to think of the reasons people enjoy Truckee. The cool thing is, it’s going to be different for everybody.”

Advertising: It’s valuable to have a presence both online and off to consistently remind your fanbase about your product’s worth. Renewed availability, stellar promotions, visibility and outreach all help your consumer choose to invest in the value of your company. A successful business influences their clients to want their merchandise not only when it’s convenient, also even when it’s outside their destination. Their trip to your storefront is this intended purpose.

Networking: Face-to-face communication still reigns king as the way to promote your product. Time spent in front of the customer is a prospective chance for selling your valuable resources. In a town known for its human interaction, why not indulge in a present experience? In fact, with the aforementioned information, could you now brainstorm how to create your own?

I recently jumped at the chance to reach out to a Truckee friend who’s opening her own business in Truckee’s Airport district, across from the Raley’s ONE Market. Grizzly Menswear fulfills a need lacking in our local business climate: affordable fits for the working-class mountain gentleman. How was this savvy concept conceived? I sat down with entrepreneur Jenny Geresy, at the downtown CoffeBar, to ask about her brave foray thru the world of Sole Proprietorship. What she’d say gleaned insight into exactly how intuiting a store plan goes.

“This time last year, during quarantine, I was working at the Oakland Children’s Hospital and wanted to move back to Truckee. I thought, how can I afford to move back? After my sister’s wedding, driving back to San Francisco, a light bulb went off in my head. Casual daily wear for men, focusing on the working professional of Tahoe. I played with the idea and couldn’t stop thinking about it. I casually told people and they thought it was a great idea; I got tons of positive feedback. My idea was a contingency on me moving back to Truckee, because I needed the money to support myself. December, things started happening. I pitched Soaring Ranch the idea, after a couple negotiations we both agreed it would be a good fit.”

Naturally, a good idea can thrive without having all of the above listed qualities, and inspiration. Nonetheless, hitting these marks can aid the success of a newly implemented establishment. In a town blossoming with wealth, why not try to facilitate a little change for your own piggy bank. As local restaurateur Chris St. Martin puts it, as I enjoyed a crisp refresher in his old town front: “Entrepreneurship is working for the benefit of your community.”

Kevin Barchas has spent much of the last 20 years getting acquainted with Truckee’s local community. When not writing, he enjoys hip-hop, golf and film. Contact him on Instagram at kbsn1pa

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