Don't Let Your Business Be An Arcus Brothers

Don't Let Your Business Be An Arcus Brothers

James Calder 15/05/2018 6

I went to college in Northeast Pennsylvania where I discovered a lot of weird things. One of them was a store called Arcus Brothers. While in college a couple of friends were walking by and got conned into helping move mattresses into this dumpy old warehouse that looked like a pawn shop.

The business’ website claims that they are one of the oldest businesses in the town of Bloomsburg. If you drive down East Street you can’t miss it. It is an old warehouse building with handwritten colorful wooden signs, which tell you almost every single thing the store sells.

It is a consignment shop of sorts.


Their website doesn’t mince words, it says they literally sell everything.

With no disrespect to the Arcus Brothers, in 2018 your business can not afford to do or sell everything. If you want your business to be successful for decades you need to focus in on the key things that you do best and do them.


It is the classic 80/20 rule. 80 percent of a company's revenue comes from 20 percent of its products. But many companies dilute themselves and their resources by jumping through hoops for clients or adding new services or product lines that aren’t their best.

Take what you do best and become even better at it. Then disrupt yourself and make it bullet proof for your competitors. Once you have an outstanding product make your marketing just as unique.

Simplifying what you do is never a bad thing. You don’t have to be everything to everyone all of the time.

Have you had to streamline your products, services or offerings? Leave a comment and let me know how it went.

Share this article

Leave your comments

Post comment as a guest

terms and condition.
  • Eddie Lamela

    I agree with your post, it's impossible to be perfect at everything. Focus on your strength to satisfy your customers.

  • Jake Rodd

    This rule only applies to SMEs and normal businesses. Nowadays, the biggest organisations are diversifying their products and services even if it's not their area of expertise to increase their market share.

  • Kumar Mohit

    Insightful read

  • Jim Dunnett

    Focus on your product and let your sales team do the rest for you

  • David Campbell

    I worked for Arcus Brothers in the 1990s. They are 3rd generation business people in this college town. Their business has evolved over 3 generations. and has adapted with the cultural and economic changes in America, and regardless of popular opinion - locally and on the internet - they have prospered. They are something more than just a retail / pawn shop. They are a local phenomenon, a curiosity shop, and occasionally a dog-and-pony show. They are their own brand of sophistication and success, and regularly outsmart college educated intellectuals, while occasionally charming them at the same time.

  • The Dude

    You must be correct, 48 years in business so far is a perfect example of not doing business according to your maxims.

Share this article

James Calder

Digital Expert

James is the Marketing Director at StratIS. He was named Top Voice on LinkedIn in 2015, and the number two voice in healthcare from more than 2 million bloggers on the platform. He was the creator of the Seinfeld Birthday Project, which went internationally viral, received more than 1 million YouTube views, and was featured in hundreds of newspapers, blogs, TV shows and radio programs. He also co-founded TAP Social Media, a boutique-marketing agency located in Philadelphia, PA. James holds a B.A. in Mass Communication from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania.

Cookies user prefences
We use cookies to ensure you to get the best experience on our website. If you decline the use of cookies, this website may not function as expected.
Accept all
Decline all
Read more
Tools used to analyze the data to measure the effectiveness of a website and to understand how it works.
Google Analytics