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Author Topic: See, Canadians and Americans are different
clockwork
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posted 29 November 2002 11:32 PM      Profile for clockwork     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
This is kinda funny. It's from the Report on Business and this sidebar is about Tim Horton's expansion into the US.

quote:
SELLING TO AMERICANS

What do Americans make of Tim Hortons? Bryan Clark, a PEI native, can rhyme off a few reactions, drawn from the early days in 1998 at his Hortons in Williamsville, a suburb of Buffalo less than 20 minutes from the Canadian border:

"People would call and say, 'Can I speak to Tim Horton please?' They thought I was Tim Horton. They would drive up and say, 'Do you sell doughnuts?'"

Cultural misunderstandings abounded. Americans like their coffee in bigger cups. And they expect a free refill or "bottomless cup." They didn't know a dutchie from an apple fritter, never had heard of Timbits, were surprised to find out how much Hortons expects to get for a coffee and wanted to know if they could pay in Canadian dollars.

And this despite Tim Horton's playing his last NHL years with the Buffalo Sabres. (He was on his way back to Buffalo from a game in Toronto in 1974 when he fatally crashed his car.) His namesake chain even opened its first U.S. location in Buffalo back in 1985. Clark felt Buffalo's cold shoulder all the more because he'd just come off a stint on a crew that opened stores in Canada. He was convinced that Americans would flock to Hortons just like Canadians. But "it was not easy. Sales were not very strong, we had trouble finding help. The name meant nothing."

It's a familiar script. "There is a graveyard full of attempts by Canadian companies to break into the U.S.," says Toronto business consultant Rick Wolfe, citing Canadian Tire, Mark's Work Wearhouse, Peoples Jewellers, Harry Rosen--"and the list goes on and on and on."

For Clark's outlet, it was getting to know the customer, sometimes one customer at a time, that brightened prospects. An extreme example: When a regular, Earl Lacey, died, Clark held a wake for him by closing off one section of the store and offering his family free coffee and food.

Clark now owns four stores in the area, which he says are performing as well as many of their Ontario counterparts (Hortons says an average franchise has annual revenues of more than $1.3 million). Tim Hortons' brew has been voted the best coffee in Buffalo for several years running. This fall, Hortons opened four new stores in one day in nearby Rochester.

The 155 U.S. Hortons stores are mostly clustered in the border towns of Buffalo, Detroit and Columbus, Ohio, neatly inverting the axiom that all of Canadian civilization hugs the U.S. border. These are places that know about coffee and doughnuts, and are within easy distribution and marketing reach for Hortons. "We believe we can establish the company very strongly in the northeast but we don't have visions at this point of becoming a national company in the United States," CEO Paul House says.


Here's the full [URL=http://tinyurl.com/33qe
]article[/URL], but it's just about the Tim Hortons business.


From: Pokaroo! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
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posted 30 November 2002 12:02 AM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
That's weird about the coffee thing. Most Canadian restaurants and even some fast-food places offer free refills on coffee.
From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Smith
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posted 30 November 2002 03:25 AM      Profile for Smith     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
They didn't know a dutchie from an apple fritter, never had heard of Timbits, were surprised to find out how much Hortons expects to get for a coffee and wanted to know if they could pay in Canadian dollars.

How cheap IS coffee in the States?

I don't think I've EVER been to a restaurant whose coffee was cheaper than Horny Tim's. Tim's is about the cheapest fast food I've ever had.

Well, maybe McDonald's is cheaper, but I don't go there.


From: Muddy York | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
abnormal
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posted 30 November 2002 10:17 AM      Profile for abnormal   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
They ... were surprised to find out how much Hortons expects to get for a coffee

Most Americans I've met tend to laugh at how little a coffee and donut cost at Tim's, especially when they convert it to US funds.


From: far, far away | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
feerit
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posted 30 November 2002 09:19 PM      Profile for feerit     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Since I've never heard of this Tim Horton's store (and being closer to Cuba than I am to Canada, not likely one will open up here anytime soon!) , what exactly *do* they charge for coffee?

Coffee prices (for just a medium-sized cup of black coffee, none of that stupid stuff) range from maybe $1 at a grocery store to $1.50 at a coffee place in a large mall. Everywhere else seems to be somewhere inbetween.

Now, unless Tim Horton's is charging $2.50 for a cup of coffee, it'd be reasonable.

Bottomless cup? Only in a restaraunt, maybe. But hey, the nearest grocery store to me just puts out a huge percolator of coffee and you can help yourself for free, only on Saturdays though.


From: Outside of Atlanta, otherwise known as loonyland | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Flowers By Irene
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posted 30 November 2002 09:51 PM      Profile for Flowers By Irene     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A medium cup at Timmy Ho's runs you a whopping buck and a quarter.

The only problem with Timmy's, I think, is the tendency to open a franchise on all four corners of every intersection in Canada.


From: "To ignore the facts, does not change the facts." -- Andy Rooney | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
clockwork
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posted 30 November 2002 10:35 PM      Profile for clockwork     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
DrC, restaurants are different than fast food places. All the coffee shops (and fast food places) I know don't offer free refills: Coffee Time, Country Style, Timmy's, Starbucks, and the smaller Canadian Bagel.

Perhaps American's when first encountering a Tim Hortons thought it was more restaurant/diner than fast-food joint and expected refills.

I'm not sure what the American Timmy's charge for coffee. I don't even know what a large coffee is at Timmy's. I stopped drinking coffee long ago. I get my tea, a loonie for any size.


Complete tangent: I remember going to North Carolina and the person I was with got a hardy laugh because I was so amazed that you could buy a can of water. I had never, ever seen a can of water before that.


From: Pokaroo! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
flotsom
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posted 30 November 2002 11:58 PM      Profile for flotsom   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A can of water.

*thump* (the sound of my head striking my desk)

Gross.


From: the flop | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Smith
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posted 01 December 2002 12:00 AM      Profile for Smith     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Like, to drink?
From: Muddy York | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
flotsom
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posted 01 December 2002 12:02 AM      Profile for flotsom   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
That's what I'm assuming Smith but, gosh I hope not.

I don't know about Vancouver but Victoria has all of one Tim Hortons. I've heard people get pretty excited about going to it.


From: the flop | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Flowers By Irene
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posted 01 December 2002 12:13 AM      Profile for Flowers By Irene     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Only one in Victoria? however do you survive out there? In London we have 46 (according to the phone book)
From: "To ignore the facts, does not change the facts." -- Andy Rooney | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
flotsom
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posted 01 December 2002 12:25 AM      Profile for flotsom   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
That's funny FBI. I am in London. I didn't mean to imply that I was in Victoria right now. As to how I survive? Barb's has great coffee or the Treehouse Cafe. Rose's in the South End has lousy coffee. When I'm in Victoria it's Torrefaziones all the way. Best coffee anywhere IMO.

In LondonOnt one guy, Bill Mahoney, former NHL coach owns probably half of all the Timmys.

[ December 01, 2002: Message edited by: flotsom ]


From: the flop | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Flowers By Irene
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posted 01 December 2002 12:43 AM      Profile for Flowers By Irene     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ack! More Londoners! I don't know what it is about this city - I've left 'permanently' four times. "Every time I think I'm out..."

A teacher I had at dirt road - his father-in-law owns 5 of the east end Timmy's. I worked at one for a while years back. Cool guy, but such a capitalist. Ick.

Anyhoo, I like my coffee strong and black, and most often brew my own. Colombian or Ethiopian is my preference.


From: "To ignore the facts, does not change the facts." -- Andy Rooney | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
flotsom
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posted 01 December 2002 02:21 AM      Profile for flotsom   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
In all fairness to myself I left in '92 and stayed away the whole time until it sort of became necessary that I put some time in here. Now, in fairness to this city ...the new market is a big improvement. I'll let you know if I think of anything else.
From: the flop | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Flowers By Irene
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posted 01 December 2002 03:09 AM      Profile for Flowers By Irene     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The arena is pretty cool (I've been once) and the restaurants along King are doing better - and cooking better, I might add.
From: "To ignore the facts, does not change the facts." -- Andy Rooney | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Shenanigans
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posted 01 December 2002 12:20 PM      Profile for Shenanigans   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
One??? Wow!

I'm in Scarberia (otherwise known as hell east of Toronto) and there is a Tim Hortons five minutes driving from each direction of me. You can't escape Tim Hortons, which isn't entirely bad, but before Starbucks or Second Cup moved in, being stuck in Tim Hortonsland when all you want is a cappuccino is very frustrating. (There are no cafes here, so I have to settle for SC and SB cappuccinos)

I think Scarborough can make a claim for having the most Tim Hortons in the world. And the sick thing is, that they're ALWAYS packed.


From: Toronto | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Smith
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posted 01 December 2002 01:36 PM      Profile for Smith     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You know, that's what Wayne's World was based on...growing up in Scarberia, hanging out at the coffee shop named after a hockey player...
From: Muddy York | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
ben_al
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posted 04 December 2002 08:00 PM      Profile for ben_al     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
We Canadians are different from Americans in more ways than just our affinity for good coffee and donuts. We are more liberal, we have better health care and education. (at least for now) I said on another forum that America likes to spend its money blowing up Iraq, Canadians prefer to spend theirs teaching students where Iraq is. There are of course many more differences between us and our southern neighbours, but we don't have time for all that.
From: Kitchener, ON | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Smith
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posted 04 December 2002 08:31 PM      Profile for Smith     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Well, lest we get too cocky, we also eat more doughnuts and Kraft Dinner per capita than any other nation in the world...hardly haute cuisine, there.

We are more secular, as well. I think this makes an enormous difference - America seems to be becoming more and more religious, and I don't think we are following.


From: Muddy York | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
SamL
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posted 04 December 2002 09:39 PM      Profile for SamL     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Thank God!
From: Cambridge, MA | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
Tommy_Paine
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posted 04 December 2002 09:52 PM      Profile for Tommy_Paine     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The thing the bugs me about Tim's in London, is that sometimes in the morning, dolts believe the "drive through" line extends out onto main roads like Adelaide or Oxford, or Highbury. And, of course, Bus drivers think they have the right to take a break, and park thier bus AT FREAKIN RUSH HOUR in front of Timmy's.

A little drive through decorum.

It's called a "drive through" for a reason. It isn't called a "Parking lot" for the same reason.

If you want a dozen donughts, or a tuna salad sandwich, park your car in the lot and walk in to the counter.

The "Drive Through" is for coffee only. I know it doesn't say that, but I'm telling you.

IT'S FOR COFFEE ONLY

It isn't a "stop and gab at the helpless drive through window employee who can't runaway when you start showing pictures of your grandchildren" kind of drive through.

Are we all on the same page here? Good.

I won't have to apply for my FAC then will I?


From: The Alley, Behind Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged

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