The owner of the van became famous for not using the tactic “Hello, I’m a blogger, I would like to get a set”.
Joe Nikki owns several CVT Soft Serve ice cream vans driving around the streets of Los Angeles. He founded this small business with his wife back in 2012, and still personally sells his products behind the counter.
Ice cream from Nikki is quite popular in the city: sometimes even Hollywood stars of the first magnitude buy it. In 2014, his food truck was recognized as the best in Los Angeles. But fame has another side: in recent years, Joe began to regularly receive letters from various bloggers. The authors of the Instagram pages or YouTube channels asked for free ice cream in exchange for a laudatory post on social networks mentioning CVT Soft Serve.
According to Nikki, similar “business offers” come to him at least once a week for several years. In an interview with Vice, he noted that he doesn’t really trust the “infensors” with several thousand subscribers: “Anyone can buy subscribers, likes and comments, Los Angeles is full of such bloggers. If you or I can buy 50,000 followers tomorrow for $ 20, then for me the popularity of a blogger is irrelevant. ”
Such people in the first 30 seconds of a conversation say something like: “Hey, I don’t know if you are subscribed to me or not, but here’s my page. Can I get a couple of free horns for advertising in a story? ” And I like this: “Are you out of your mind? This is ice cream for four dollars. ”
In 2019, the phrase “Yes, you know who I am?” Replaced the phrase “I am a blogger”.
ice cream van owner
Usually Nikki answered bloggers’ letters, jokingly saying that he would rather spend a vacation in the DPRK than give up free ice cream for a post on social networks. He published some answers in the CVT Soft Serve instagram. But in early July, Joe was asked to come with a free ice cream for a whole party with 300 guests. Instead of paying, he was offered advertising on Instagram.
The next day, a sign appeared in Nikki’s van: “Bloggers pay double the price.” “I do not care how many subscribers you have. We will never give you free ice cream in exchange for a post in social networks. If you offer this, now four dollars ice cream costs eight for you, ”added the ice cream man.
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We’ve decided to make this thing official with signage. We truly don’t care if you’re an Influencer, or how many followers you have. We will never give you a free ice cream in exchange for a post on your social media page. It’s literally a $4 item…well now it’s $8 for you. #InfluencersAreGross
The reaction of Nikki went to social networks and Reddit . There he was reminded that in 2014 he himself gave free ice cream to Bill Murray. But Joe explained that this was an exception for the beloved actor: “Hollywood stars come to me, but they pay money. A celebrity photo won’t pay me a bill. ”
Despite the dislike for bloggers, it was the photo on Instagram with a sign that attracted the attention of social networks to the business with ice cream. “I understand that this is quite ironic,” Nikki admits. But the owner of the CVT Soft Serve stressed: even if his vans have only 5,000 subscribers on Instagram, but if they close the social network once, it will survive. But how bloggers will cope – he does not know.