//
you're reading...
Downtown Businesses

A Week at Cowan’s: The True Meaning of Social Media

As some of you might know, I manage quite a few Facebook pages. That’s why when Tom and Rachel, the owners of Cowan’s Restaurant downtown, asked me to help promote the Social Media Week of their Customer Appreciation Month, I quickly said “yes”. It was an unusual job offer, with unusual hours, unusual job description and an unusual period of time – just the perfect thing for me! And, it promised to be fun!

sdsf

Cowan’s Restaurant have been celebrating their anniversary all month long! And they have a new menu with delicious dinner specials!

At the start of Social Media Week at Cowan’s Tom and I bounced some ideas off of each other, and he gave me freedom to do what I want. There was no better way on his part to put my creative mind to work. Had somebody told me I would be an Official Social Media Specialist a year ago, I would probably laugh at them. Yet, I loved wearing my name tag and being part of the Cowan’s Family for a week.

My name tag came out a little bigger, but I still found a way to wear it. It proved to be a great conversation starter.

My name tag came out a little bigger, but I still found a way to wear it. It proved to be a great conversation starter.

Wednesday morning I was at Cowan’s before going to work at the Visitor Center. It’s amazing how many loyal customers they’ve got, who keep returning day after day. I walked from table to table, asking people if they liked Cowan’s Restaurant on Facebook and telling them about the giveaways we were having. What amazed me, is how nice everyone was. They listened to what I had to say with a smile, and then proceeded to tell me how much they loved the restaurant and the pie. Sure, it must have been slightly unusual to have your breakfast interrupted by a strange girl with a giant name tag and an accent, asking you if you were on Facebook, but nobody seemed to mind. Of course, I had mugs and glasses and key chains and T-Shirts and flashlights to give away 😉

Mornings at Cowan's are busy. There is such a sense of community in the restaurant, and you can always spot a familiar face.

Mornings at Cowan’s are busy. There is such a great sense of community in the restaurant, and you can always spot a familiar face.

The same day I returned in the evening, to spread the word about Social Media and how when you like Cowan’s on Facebook, you can stay updated on their specials and all that’s new. I changed into my shirt with my special name tag and I felt like I belonged there. Approaching strangers did not bother me anymore, I wanted to hear more of their stories about the restaurant and what kept them coming back.

These ladies just told us the sweetest story and we rewarded them with a mini pie and a coffee mug! A year ago, this lady's husband needed some new suits, and he showed up in a store in Chesterfield mall wearing a Cowan's t-shirt. The people there asked him how good of a pie that must be for him to wear a shirt like that. On his last visit at the store, he took them one of Rachel's delicious pies as a proof. Just recently, he found himself back at the same store, and the shopping assistant found a picture of that very same pie on his phone and could not stop saying how good it was!!

These ladies shared with me the sweetest story and I rewarded them with a mini pie and a coffee mug! A year ago, this lady’s husband needed some new suits, and he showed up in a store in Chesterfield mall wearing a Cowan’s t-shirt. The people there asked him how good of a pie that must be for him to wear a shirt like that. On his last visit at the store, he took them one of Rachel’s delicious pies as a proof. Just recently, he found himself back at the same store, and the shopping assistant found a picture of that very same pie on his phone and could not stop saying how good it was!!

On Thursday, I was at Cowan’s at 7:30 am, then came back right after work and Tom fed me some delicious dinner. I heard so many wonderful stories of why people love Cowan’s and how this is the family place to meet. The excellent food and the amazing pie definitely helped bring people back, but there was more to Cowan’s than that. The friendly staff, the warm inviting atmosphere, the collective memories inhabiting the walls created an ambiance like no other prompting you to return and to be part of it again.

Betty Obermire Where else can you go eat breakfast have your eggs cut up just the way you like them and asked will it be the usual. Most places do not know the usual or care. I have parked and gone in to have my coffee waiting at the table because they saw me go by- WOW. Awesome pies, great food and great service that is as good as it gets. I also get a kick out of telling my brother-in-law that we see Gary Lucy there having his coffee in the morning. Thanks for keeping that small town feel it is what we all need sometimes, like Norm coming into Cheers you feel welcomed.

“Where else can you go eat breakfast have your eggs cut up just the way you like them and asked will it be the usual. Most places do not know the usual or care. I have parked and gone in to have my coffee waiting at the table because they saw me go by- WOW. Awesome pies, great food and great service that is as good as it gets. I also get a kick out of telling my brother-in-law that we see Gary Lucy there having his coffee in the morning. Thanks for keeping that small town feel it is what we all need sometimes, like Norm coming into Cheers you feel welcomed.”  Betty Obermire

On Friday I was back early in the evening, and the minute I walked through the door I was greeted with smiles. T-shirt, name tags, gifts to give away, and I already spotted some familiar faces.

Gail and Mike Louse from Country Living Antiques and Collectibles and More on Main Street

Gail and Mike Lause from Country Living Antiques and Collectibles and More on Main Street were sitting at the same table in the corner the evening before. Actually, Gail was the first person to take me to Cowan’s Restaurant, Tom happens to be her nephew. Cowan’s felt more and more like family.

On Saturday morning, while I was doing my rounds my husband ordered us breakfast. The restaurant was full, and everybody was happy to learn about our social media promotions. I saw many friends, gave away lots of t-shirts, flashlights and mugs, and made some new friends. When I got back to our table, we weren’t sitting alone any more. How nice it was to share breakfast with friend without planning it in advance!

Meet the Same-os. We do not call them by name. They order the same thing every time. She gets pancakes and he gets an omelet. We love having them as our regular customers!

Meet the Same-os. We do not call them by name. They order the same thing every time. She gets pancakes and he gets an omelet. Here is what Mary says: “I have no reason to change my order when the Pancakes are perfect every time and the taste is fantastic! Every pancake I have ever tried at other restaurants cannot even compete with Cowan’s! And, enough good things cannot be said about the service. The ladies are not just waitresses, they are wonderful friends. I love when our grand-daughter can’t wait to go to “Miss Donna’s” for breakfast.”

I could not wait to share all these wonderful stories with Rachel and Tom, who were busy in the kitchen,  yet always found time to walk around and greet the customers. Tom insisted on making me something to eat every time I was there throughout the week. Just like they appreciated what I did, I appreciated the opportunity to be part of the wonderful Cowan’s family and the amazing Washington community. Cowan’s Restaurant is one of these places that you come, taste, experience, enjoy and then “like” on Facebook because you really want to. Nowadays when Social Media tends to replace face-to-face communication and distance us from each other, Cowans’ Restaurant is like a safe haven for young and old, who like to meet, laugh and enjoy a delicious meal like a family would do at the dinner table, fully present in the moment. Rachel and Tom are truly some of the sweetest people I know, and their motivation to keep the restaurant going is the tradition they would like to continue. Cowan’s Restaurant has been welcoming different generations over the years and the combination of wonderful staff and amazing customers makes it The Place To Meet downtown. I really enjoyed my unusual job for a week, which reminded me how important is to appreciate what you’ve got and be grateful for the little things every day. Just like a yummy breakfast with the family on a Sunday. Or a casual dinner for two on a random Wednesday evening. Or coffee and pie with a friend as an afternoon treat. You don’t need a special occasion to go to Cowan’s. But every time you do, it’s a delightful experience.

"Cowan's is family. It is not just immediate family but extended family as well. It is where my father has met his friends for decades to hash out all the world's issues over morning coffee. It is where my family would often eat brunch after going to Sunday mass together. It is where I would walk with friends after school to get a bite to eat. It is where I would take my out of town friends to eat to give them a taste of Washington. And now, it is where I take my family to eat when we are in town to give them not only food for their bodies but a feeling of community that comes along greeting people that I haven't seen in years and introducing them to the "next generation". It is not only the heart of downtown but of WashMO as well." Julie Munroe

“Cowan’s is family. It is not just immediate family but extended family as well. It is where my father has met his friends for decades to hash out all the world’s issues over morning coffee. It is where my family would often eat brunch after going to Sunday mass together. It is where I would walk with friends after school to get a bite to eat. It is where I would take my out of town friends to eat to give them a taste of Washington. And now, it is where I take my family to eat when we are in town to give them not only food for their bodies but a feeling of community that comes along greeting people that I haven’t seen in years and introducing them to the “next generation”. It is not only the heart of downtown but of WashMO as well.” Julie Munroe

About Slava

I am a twenty-something Bulgarian girl in the USA, re-discovering the world through the lens.

Discussion

One Response to “A Week at Cowan’s: The True Meaning of Social Media”

  1. It has been a fun week watching Slava meet and greet the customers of Cowan’s. Can’t wait to see what is next!!

    Posted by Bernie Howell | June 23, 2013, 6:29 pm

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: