They say one is the loneliest number, and in some ways I subscribe to this notion. We live in a society where you often feel bad for just having one thing going for you, for just offering one service or for (imagine the horror) vacationing alone. For the media,the end of year sirens lure journalists to come up with outrageous Top Top 10 Lists (rarely Top 1 Lists) and the self-help gurus implore you to declare your New Year’s Resolutions in the plural sense. What’s so wrong with coming up with ONE THING you plan to master, one product you plan to sell, one person you plan to befriend this year? I thought about this over the weekend when I stumbled upon The Pickle Guys on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. These guys have been selling nothing but pickles and pickled products for nearly a century: sour pickles, tomatilloes, pickled tomatoes, by the gallon, half gallon or whatever is your fancy. So unique was the concept to me and my friends that we took photos of ourselves eating pickles amid the backdrop of the pickle guy serving other customers. We spent $20 on pickles that might have tasted just as good and cost half as much from the A&P, but it didn’t matter. As we made our way to other parts of Manhattan we started noticing other one-trick ponies, like Just Bulbs, The Sock Man and Cartridge World. These are retailers really niching the niche – focusing on one thing and doing it well. As we seek to build out our social networks, adding more friends on Facebook, more circles on Google+, more followers on Twitter, it behooves us to remember that focusing on one thing/one business goal/one product/one new year’s resolution can be a delicious pursuit too.
On Twitter: dianeschwartz