When partners have a passion for starting their own business, but their unsure of what it should be, sometimes they just got to hit the open road for the idea to intuitively enter their minds. Well, at least that’s the story for Lyndsey Bell and Jay Valeri owners of Bigfoot Donuts in downtown Courtney on Vancouver Island.
That’s right, Bigfoot Donuts.
What’s the reason Bigfoot Donuts came to be?
“Well, my husband and I got tired of our corporate jobs and wanted to get into business for ourselves. We grew up in families that have been in business for themselves for, forever really. So we always knew we were going to open our own business, and we just need to figure out what is was, and we had gone on road trips and visited lots of donut shops and decided that’s what it should be,” said Lyndsey Bell.
Sometimes one gets the idea to open up a donut shop from visiting other donut shops, and it’s as simple as that.
From a business owner’s perspective, there has to be something that motivates a person to wake up and come to work every day.
“I can genuinely say I love what I do now, and that’s all I need.”
Bigfoot Donuts has earned an astounding 4.9 out the 5-star rating review on their social media Facebook page from calculated from 72 written reviews. Now, with a rating like that one has to ask, what makes the customers keep coming back?
“Our product is such that it is a specialty, there are no preservatives, and it does not come from a bag; it’s all made from scratch from a recipe we developed. And our toppings are different from what you can get from other donut shops, so I think that is just something different and a bit of a treat and people are eating it I guess because we have been busy.”
Lyndsey says that a lot of their marketing for the donut shop has been through their Facebook page.
The vibe Lyndsey and Jay get from social media is that their customers are feeling excited about their product. A lot of the feedback they receive back from social media is about how they are doing something different, and it’s something that people are really interested in, which in turn gets them talking.
As people of Courtney, Lyndsey, and Jay had shared values, they wanted to bring into the community.
“We really wanted to be part of the community. So we tried to involve them a lot through our social media. We’re involved in the downtown business now and the downtown business improvement association.”
The community of Courtney and Vancouver Island won’t see this business expand or grow extensively anytime soon because: “Well, we really just wanted to be a donut shop,” says Lyndsey.
They’re content as the mom and pop donut shop.
What Bigfoot Donuts is trying to convey to their customers and get them to understand is their product does not contain any preservatives, and it’s all from scratch. Yes, that’s right, it’s all from scratch. What does that mean?
It means, “we crack the eggs; we pour the milk.”
Which also means, “we know what’s going into our product.”
Educating the customers on what is in their product is something both Lyndsey and Jay are working vigorously at all the time. Due to using better ingredients the cost for one of these icy delicacies is a bit more than the average donut, but a person is paying for quality.
What’s so special about this business being in Courtney?
“We grew up here; I was born and raised here. My husband moved here when he was five, and we’ve been here ever since. We did move away for a few years to go to school, but we know we’d come back. We just really love where we lived and wanted to be a bigger part of that, and that’s why we’re doing this by being a local business.”