If you haven’t discovered 9 Fruits by now, let me point you in their direction. When I was first introduced to the business in 2008 through a customer of theirs, I was hooked. The smoothies are delicious (and healthy), but something else kept drawing me back: the atmosphere. From the laid back yet attentive service to the inspirational pictures, books, and quotes adorning the walls, you will know you’re visiting a different kind of smoothie shop. As owner Dan Banks put it, “We want the experience to be different — not just taking smoothie orders. We want to build a relationship with our customers.”
Dan is not the founder of 9 Fruits, though he was certainly involved from the beginning. He and his wife actually took over when their sons’ paths called them from the store a couple of years ago. Twins Kyle and Kevin Banks opened the doors to 9 Fruits in 2007, with the help and support of their parents. It provided the brothers an opportunity to learn about business while providing the Cool Springs area with a new kind of smoothie shop, one off the beaten path. The name comes from the 9 “fruits of the spirit” found in the Bible, and the business is committed to the blending of physical and spiritual health.
What You Will Love
- The menu consists of 9 well-crafted smoothies. From the Green Teaser to the Strawberry Blonde, each blend is inspired to be a healthy, balanced combination. Have a hankering for something not on the menu? You also have the option to create your own, omitting or adding ingredients to suit your tastes. Some custom requests get popular enough they even earn their own name without being on the menu (Madame Blueberry, anyone?).
- Committed to healthy options, ingredients are all natural, fresh and without added sugar or high fructose corn syrup. For those who prefer to skip dairy, there are soy options or you can request just fruit. Some of the smoothies, like the Choc Full of Peanut Butter(TM), even seem to taste better that way. They also have add-ins for protein, energy and weight gain for everyone looking to fuel their body after a hard workout.
- The atmosphere in 9 Fruits is laid back and enjoyable. Loyal customers laugh and interact easily with both staff and each other. There is a sense of familiarity that resembles the feel of a local coffee house.
- And, of course, there is the staff. Whether you are talking with one of the family members or an employee, everyone is attentive and friendly. They seem to genuinely enjoy working there. You leave with the sense of having made a personal connection, not just placing an order and getting a product.
9 Fruits has three locations: in Cool Springs, in the Maryland Farms YMCA, and in the Brentwood YMCA on Concord Rd, making them a natural part of the healthy living community in Williamson County. At the Cool Springs location, they have a large bulletin board full of local business cards for fellow customers to connect with each other. They also show support for other local businesses, such as Southern Blues. They have participated in downtown Franklin’s Main Street Festival and hosted a Smoothie Drinking contest at the YMCA.
You can find 9 Fruits on Facebook, where they have been liked by over 1,800 people and on Twitter, where they have 1,500 followers. Both of these sources are outlets for posts and updates about store changes and community interactions. Be sure to “check-in” on Facebook next time you’re there to show your support.
During its initial few years, the 9 Fruits team was very active on social media, devoting many hours to building their online presence. They found some success in bringing people to the store, but had a hard time sustaining trackable results. Ultimately, they made the decision to focus on referral and direct marketing to the businesses and professionals nearby with great success.
Check them out online, then visit a location for yourself. You’re guaranteed to experience a local business happily blending tasty smoothies and building great relationships.
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