We had the good fortune of connecting with Adrienne Knauer and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Adrienne, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
There are many important factors behind the success of my brand, but I’d say the biggest is being able to differentiate myself from the competition. I read a life-changing book called Blue Ocean Strategy. If you offer a different service unlike anything that’s out there, you will likely be successful and have little to no competition. In my harp business, I do that by playing rock, pop, and jazz covers of songs. A lot of harpists and classically-trained musicians (as I am) are wrapped up in how they think their business “should” be instead of evolving with the times and adapting to the needs of consumers in the present world. You truly have to “think outside the box” and be ok with being different.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
One thing that sets me apart besides differentiating myself by playing more pop, rock, and jazz music, is my level of customer service. I am quick to respond, adapt, and be flexible. If I can’t get to something right away, I tell my clients. I pay attention to every detail and have become intuitive about what a client would want before they have to ask me for it. A challenge was really stepping outside of this classical music box I had grown so accustomed to. I used to be self-conscious posting videos of myself playing, say, hip hop songs on Instagram, but it’s what people love and are surprised by and want to hear. The more you do something, the less self-conscious you will be. One valuable lesson I’ve learned is to “go the extra mile, because it’s never crowded.” Your reputation is one of the most important things you have and you must do everything in your power to go above and beyond what is expected.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Let’s pretend we’re in a post-Covid world 🙂 I moved to Phoenix to escape the snow so really anything outdoors to show them how neat and beautiful this city is. I’d probably take them paddleboarding or kayaking on Saguaro Lake, maybe drive the Apache Trail (when it’s open and not closed due to rock falls!), and take them to Goldfield Ghostown. I think the Superstition Mountains are some of the coolest scenery we have here. I’d take them on a walk or bike ride on the green belt or to Hole in the Rock at Papago to watch the sunset. We could do an early morning hike at Gateway Trail or Camelback if they were adventurous and it wasn’t the summer time! As far as food…I’d get some coffee at Inner Circle. We’d also have to hit up my favorite Mexican fast food joint, Los Betos, at some point for shrimp tacos and a bacon breakfast burrito. Maybe we’d get the best poke ever at Chula Seafood. For happy hour, we’d have a beer sitting outside at Fate Brewery or an avocado margarita at The Mission. So many options to choose from 🙂
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My Shoutout is to all the young adults, college students and recent college grads who are trying to navigate through life. I was there too one time, feeling accomplished but lost. If you do the work, plant the seeds, and be patient, it will pay off in the longrun.
Photos taken by Shelby Lea Photography, Erika Whittaker, and Tim King.
Nominate someone: ShoutoutArizona is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.