by Katrina Boguski
“People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories and magic.”
This Seth Godin quote appears on the Kohara + Co. website. If you don’t know who Seth Godin is, you might get a sense of his influence if you visit this lighting
The interior and exterior lighting store, which also offers home decor, seems to
have internalized the essence of Godin’s marketing genius and put it on display in
an inspiring setting where local residents and contractors might engage with it. It
seems like there is a story behind every product they offer and a person behind
Godin is the author of several books on marketing including Purple Cow, Linchpin
and Permission Marketing. He has penned or uttered many quotes that reflect his
belief in statements like, “Be genuine. Be remarkable. Be worth connecting with.”
The folks at Kohara + Co. are all of these things, and their authenticity was on
full display during the open house they hosted recently. Not only was the occasion
a chance to see their new store at 175 Industrial Road in Haliburton, it was a
chance to see and experience the work of some other local businesses too. The event
made one feel that Brandi Hewson and her team were as concerned about sharing
the spotlight with other local businesses as they were about shining it on themselves.
This collaborative approach is a deliberate part of the philosophy that motivates
the Kohara + Co. brand. Hewson told the Echo that a quote from Charles Darwin,
which appears on some of their marketing material is very important to her.
Darwin said, “Those who learn to collaborate and improvise most effectively
prevail.” Hewson explained, “In such a competitive, often short sighted world
we live in especially in business, I believe it is so critical to seek the opportunities to
share and partner to create and provide the ultimate experience but also to lift each
other up and try to contribute to each other’s sustainability in business.
The generous gestures and attention to detail which created this welcoming
atmosphere also explained the well earned confidence shown by the team at Kohara + Co.
In a conversation with Tamara Bain, it was evident that she knows her stuff. Her
level of product knowledge was impressive, and she conveyed a significant number
of intriguing facts about the products in the store in a way that was conversational
and downright inspiring.
Investing in design can pay huge dividends, and lighting design offers one of
the best returns on investment. You may spend hours staring at paint chips, fretting
over colours, but if your light is off, the colour on the wall could look entirely
different. Lighting is also one of the fastest ways to make or break the ambiance of a
room. Your furniture and décor might be stunning, but if they are in a room full of
shadows, or viewed under light that is too harsh or too dim, the whole mood of your
room could be set off. Don’t be surprised if the mood of the room has an impact on
your own mood too.
The conversation with Bain also pointed out how investment in quality light fixtures,
fans and other products can result in using less energy. Using less energy is
good for your wallet and the environment.
Whether you are in the market for couple of Edison inspired LED lightbulbs, or
are planning a complete lighting makeover or new build, the crew at Kohara + Co.
has a selection of lighting and other products as abundant as that found at any big
city designer and they have the expertise to help you sort through the options available.
Their website states, “Kohara + Co. delivers an exceptional lighting solution
and tailored experience to our clients designed to exclusively enhance interior
and exterior spaces. We collaborate with and support our community of designers,
trades and clients resulting in a truly valued and impressive result.”
This collaboration with other businesses was shown tangibly in the gift
bag that each person attending the grand opening took with them. The brown craft
paper bag with handles and the Kohar +Co. logo neatly affixed to it was stuffed
with swag offered by vendors and other local businesses. These included things
like light bulbs, votive candles and business cards from various local merchants;
on the cards were written various discount amounts or coupon offerings. There
were also several high-quality door prizes of significant value which were supplied
by lighting vendors and other local merchants.
In reflecting on how the grand opening went, Hewson said, “We have been overwhelmed
with interest and support. It’s so invigorating to have people come by and
trust in us to help guide them with their light selections but also to just drop by to
see what Kohara is all about and share their love of our space and our vision. It’s
so important to us to have a space people feel welcomed and inspired in and having
that reinforced by our visitors comments and shared joy that we even exist in Haliburton
as such a demanded service is so solidifying for me that I’ve made the right
investment. We are listening and taking in all the positivity and have so much more
to share as we continue to grow on this journey with Kohara + Co.