October 28, 2019
El Mercado: A Family Affair
By Jenna Paulus, PR Manager, Deluxe
Every season of Small Business Revolution it seems like we find at least one business that is run by a husband/wife duo. This year was no different. El Mercado, a Mexican grocery store in Searcy, Arkansas, is owned and run by Jose and Catrina Mendoza.
When another store closed in its location, Catrina’s dad, who owns the building, gave them an opportunity and they ran with it. They decided to open El Mercado, an authentic Mexican grocery store, very similar to that of what Jose was used to back in Mexico, where most of his family still lives. Jose was working another job at the time that took him away from his family for a majority of the time, so this new venture gave him an opportunity to not only spend more time with his family but bring a piece of his former home to Searcy.
Being closer to family took on a whole new meaning, as Catrina and Jose started taking their kids to the store, giving them a room in the back to play while they worked with customers. Soon, their eldest son, Camilo, decided he wanted to have a role in the store as well, and started gathering the eggs from his chickens on the Mendoza farm and bringing them into the store to sell.
El Mercado is truly a family affair. They have an amazing collection of authentic Mexican food, a carniceria (meat counter), where Jose serves up fresh cuts of meat, a section for baked goods and Camilo’s fresh eggs. But, their problem? Most people in Searcy, don’t even know they exist. Sounds familiar, right?
Luckily, our team at Deluxe knows a thing or two about marketing a small business. We brought in some of our experts to rethink their branding, give them a new logo that popped, especially on their sign that can be seen by a major stretch of road in Searcy. In addition, our web team created a website that not only communicated the story of El Mercado, including Camilo’s eggs, but they also made sure certain keywords were added so more people would find El Mercado in web searches.
Nearly seven months after our team chose El Mercado to be one of the six featured businesses this season, they’ve already seen more traffic coming in the door and more and more people being intrigued by a store they never knew existed.
Jose and Catrina and their family have a business that can span generations and become a destination in Searcy. With Deluxe’s help, they’re well on their way.