Be More ‘Tuck Shop’ – Marketing strategy for small/medium businesses.



  1. a type of product manufactured by a particular company under a particular name.

The official definition of Brand is this simple; the concept of a particular product, being associated with a particular company. Yet, it’s so commonly overcomplicated.

I often speak to businesses who seem to be under the impression that unless they are aiming for global recognition, there’s no point bothering. For example –

‘We are only a family run restaurant, we don’t need flash branding’

‘We want our product to speak for itself’.

What frustrates me about these statements is that generally they have a fantastic product, but I’m sorry to say a fantastic product alone will never be enough. If there isn’t a soul who knows you exist, there is simply no way you will generate business.

Yet, at the same time, I appreciate that many businesses struggle to shake the concept of branding being ‘flashy’ and intimidating, as for a long time it was only deemed to be the concern of huge cooperations.

Therefore, I want you to humour me with my analogy of an office ‘Tuck shop’.

Not everywhere I’ve worked has had a canteen, so they’ve often compensated with a small tuck shop, selling chocolate bars, crisps, cans etc. Often, due to their nature, they are in the thick of the office, surrounded by desks. One day I walked past an example of said Tuck Shop, and caught myself thinking that I was glad that my desk wasn’t so close, because I’d be constantly reminded of its presence, and therefore far more likely to buy items.

The people, whose desks surrounded it, would obviously automatically think of the tuck shop the moment they wanted a snack, and via versa; the presence of the Tuck Shop, would remind them of snacking.

Which made me think, this is where businesses should aim to be with their brand; the Tuck Shop isn’t a global entity, it doesn’t have to cater to millions or have VC funding, but it has successfully captured its target market. It has made itself visible and has regularly advertised its products and presence. Therefore the relevant target market associated snacks with the tuck shop.

The family-run restaurant mentioned above sold Italian food, their aim should be to brand themselves so that when their neighbourhood thinks of Italian food, they associate the restaurant.

Think about your business, could it do with being more Tuck Shop?

Author: Hadleigh Winter