When do you know things are getting back to a sense of normalcy during COVID-19? What are the signs?

They say, whoever they are, that there is a certain marker that will harken the end of a recession. It’s called the underwear indicator. During a downturn, undie sales decrease. When they bounce back to a 2-3% increase, it indicates a recovery.

Could a hot dog be the marker for COVID recovery?

Costco Wholesale has announced that its food courts are on the way to be reopened. That means the iconic $1.50 hot dog, soda combo may be hitting your stomach soon. In 2019, Costco sold 151 million of them.

The retailer launched the combo back in 1985. 36 years later it is still the original price. According to Food & Wine, “Bureau of Labor Statistics’ CPI Inflation Calculator suggests the price should be around $3.65.”

The hot dog combo is a #PinkGoldfish of micro-weirding for Costco Wholesale. And they are fiercely protective of it. Co-founder Jim Sinegal said during a 2009 interview with The Seattle Times. “We’re known for that hot dog. That’s something you don’t mess with.”

Current CEO W. Craig Jelinek took over from Sinegal in 2012. When he talked about raising the price, Sinegal retorted, ‘If you raise the effing hot dog, I will kill you. Figure it out.”

Follow me on Twitter or LinkedIn

Stan Phelps walks the walk. He stands out in the sea of sameness by modeling his own Differentiated Experience (DX) message: Differentiation isn’t just about what you say, it’s about what you do and, more importantly, how and why you do it. Stan leverages his unique collection of 5,000+ case studies on customer, employee, and brand experience to engage audiences with informative learning-based experiences. He believes purposeful DX wins the hearts of employees and customers, and differentiation ultimately boosts loyalty, retention, referrals, and results.

Find Stan’s in-person and virtual keynotes, workshops, and Goldfish tank programs at StanPhelps.com.