The lovely little town of Delray Beach is situated along the pristine beaches of south Florida between the towns of Boynton Beach and Deerfield Beach, 15 miles south of West Palm Beach. (That’s a lot of beaches.)
That smell wafting in the background is from Delray and it has nothing to do with tidal wash or expired sea creatures. It is coming from Old School Square where the Annual Garlic Festival is taking place. I went. I browsed. I smelled.
Between bands I found myself wandering through the many booths selling various products that up to now, you never knew you needed. From aprons to old signage on weathered drift wood, it was all there. The food booths were heavily populated and each one had a garlic fragrance that would eventually lead to an extra clothes washing when you returned home.
It was the food that drew my attention. Ice cream, lemonade, steak sandwiches, hot dogs, pizza, chicken, pasta, beer and many more selections for every taste of “jones” imaginable. That’s when it hit me. I began watching the thousands of people strolling without a designated destination and each one had selected a different treat to consume. Different strokes for different folks in full technicolor.
The message here is (1) Be prepared to smell like garlic when going to a garlic festival. (2) You can’t be everything to everybody. People have different tastes, likes and dislikes. Your market is your market and should consist of people who have a taste for what you have to offer. This is the way it was in Delray on Sunday, and this is the way it will be for you for the rest of the year. The garlic pizza was not competing with the garlic ice cream. They were just targeting different tastes.
The common thread however is the lesson my dad taught me years ago when he said, “Mike, you can’t sell from an empty wagon.” The garlic dogs had to be present and available in order to sell a garlic-laden hot dog. You have to be present to offer and provide your travel services.
Now I have to run. It is time to put my clothes into the dryer.