Word of Mouth via Toaster

My wife and I live in a small mill house, and storage space is a valuable commodity. Our kitchen is actually larger than many of the galley-style builds in similar houses, but the layout still leaves us with very little counter space. Which means we have to make choices.

Microwave or toaster oven on the counter? (There’s not room for both.) Do we even need a toaster oven? Where am I going to set this steaming casserole down?

It turns out that we like toast, but not enough to eat up counter space with a toaster. And we didn’t want to heat the oven up every time for such a simple item. Luckily, my wife found a nifty little stovetop toaster to solve our problems (1).

The process was simple: she sent me a link, I browsed Google Shopping results and picked the cheapest option. I clicked, I bought, I forgot.

When the toaster arrived, though, I was pleasantly surprised to find a product produced by a company that based their brand on a fascinating – and true – story. And they cared about it enough to attach a piece of it to a $20 toaster. Here’s the tag that was attached to our new bread burner:

I don’t know about you, but owning a piece of flimsy tin isn’t very inspiring. Owning a “precious piece of American history?” Now that’s pretty cool.

Of course, I hopped online to learn more, and I was shocked at how much the brand provided – when they say history, they mean it. It wasn’t just a marketing or branding gimmick. (You can read about the company’s namesake and his invention of this nifty toaster, as well as other genuine, pioneer-used products on their website (2)).

Needless to say, knowing the story behind our little stovetop wonder added a heckuva lot more value to it, and created a prime opportunity for word of mouth.

Case in point: a few days after the toaster arrived, a several friends came over to the house. One of them spied the contraption sitting on our stove and asked me, “What the heck is that thing?”

“Oh man,” I said, “Did you know that this device is what the pioneers of the west used to toast their bread over a campfire?”

Well done, Jacob Bromwell.

• (1) – You can find a nifty toaster for yourself right here.

• (2) – You can read about Jacob Bromwell and the Pioneer Folding Toaster on their website.

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