The agency dedicated exclusively to family businesses.
Strategy | Communications | Marketing
1. We create powerful social, marketing, and
cultural impact campaigns for family businesses
Whether the family business is a Fortune 500 or a local bakery, we help them with both big-picture strategy and the day-to-day activity of getting more affinity customers excited about the added value of family-run ventures. The great thing about empowering family business is that the customers benefit, too. They get better goods and services, from companies with better ethics. It's a win-win.
"I saw that there was Shop Small and Shop Local, but no Shop Family. So I created it." - Christian D'Andrea
2. We use Advocacy and the Power of Story to champion family businesses
We introduce audiences to compelling family businesses — and advocate on their behalf — by telling their stories. At the heart of it all is our belief that shopping at family businesses generally means a better experience with better products, a point made in this keynote...
3. We develop original content
FAMILY MATTERS - the series
This documentary-series will take you on a journey to the unexpected corners of the country where you'll find the most fascinating, outlandish, and legendary family businesses, which are oftentimes the best in the world at what they do. In the pilot episode, I visit the fabled Henderson guitar workshop, where Wayne and his daughter make some of the most coveted guitars in the world. How coveted? Eric Clapton was on the waitlist for 7 years.
Shopping Family is more important than ever
COVID has hit family businesses especially hard, because they don't have the billion-dollar cushions, rainy-day funds, and access to capital that the big corporations have. Now more than ever, it's time to rally and support them.
90% of American businesses are family-owned or controlled.
They account for half the nation's employment.
- U.S. Bureau of the Census
90% have seen some negative impact on their business from COVID.
- Harvard Business Review
Featured Family: the Bears
Meadowbrooke Gourds in Pennsylvania isn't just a beautiful patch of earth anchored by a lovely farmhouse and shop. It's also the largest grower of gourds in the world. A family business that stretches back 27 years, the farm is now a thriving 220-acre enterprise focused on cultivating the plant in vast quantities and then transforming them into something wonderful. Ben Bear, the pater familias, was a pioneer in bringing the pear-shaped plant down from New England, and he began by growing gourds as a complement to pumpkins. But it didn't take long for there to be a lot of competition, and his oversupply of produce lay unharvested. That led to the aha moment. Turns out, the gooseneck gourds didn't rot, even if left on the ground all winter. Their shells dried and hardened, protecting them. Ben Bear, who was also a carpenter, noticed this unusual trait, and he decided to play around with them and carve some shapes (there's a reason he's referred to as a "tinkerpreneur"). Now, Meadowbrooke is a shrine to what has to be one of the world's most remarkable arrays of gourd craftsmanship. There are twenty staff dedicated to the gourd growing and crafting, and six of them have the last name Bear. But as everyone at Meadowbrooke will quickly point out, the other 14 are all considered family, too.
People worry (rightfully) that big multi-nationals are usurping the marketplace, killing the little guy, homogenizing offerings, and lowering quality. The artisan merchant, the craftsman businessman, the guy or gal who has their trade or business in their blood... they’re all under siege.
So I'm doing something about it. I launched ShopFamily®, a shopping resource that allows you to stand up for something, with every purchase you make. First, the site enlists all of you in helping identify the great businesses that are still in the family. And then ShopFamily aggregates them in one easy-to-use depot—searchable by location and type of product or service. So you can effortlessly learn about, and shop from, established family businesses.
These family-run businesses make great stuff, from candy bars to bicycles to rockets to wine to the world’s purest apple vinegar. And yes, each business showcased by ShopFamily consists of more than one generation of family members directly involved in the business. That’s what makes them special. They care more deeply, because it’s a legacy. And that passion benefits the consumer. Let's be honest, wouldn't you rather buy from someone who considers her business a matter of family honor?
Do yourself a favor, and get it from the good guys... get it from the families. It’s the right thing to do, and on top of that, the goods and services are better! Because the people making them really care.
So, shop, buy, and stand up for something.
Christian D'Andrea created a family business — SoldierFuel.com — with his two brothers.
He believes strongly that family businesses are the backbone of American business. So supporting and strengthening them is a personal passion.
He looked around and saw that there was Shop Small and Shop Local, but no Shop Family. So he created it.
Executive Director of FDU's Rothman Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Dale Caldwell is one of the most highly-regarded figures in the world of family business advocacy.
Son of the legendary Civil Rights activist Rev. Gilbert H. Caldwell (who marched with MLK), Dale has a deep-rooted passion for doing good by harnessing the power of education, outreach, advocacy, and creative enterprise.