Nowadays, coffee shop owners are fighting in a highly competitive business scene. At a good location, especially if in a busy city center, it is very likely that a cafe will have competitors in the very same street. A unique brand strategy can be just the way to stand out from the crowd!
We have put together some ideas on how a well-structured coffee shop branding can be crucial for your business to thrive and differentiate itself from the competition.
Why a coffee shop branding strategy is so important?
In a red ocean like the coffee industry, most cafes will offer fair quality beans, a decent food menu, and competitive pricing. All those points are very important to create a healthy business. We have actually created a post previously about how to make your coffee shop a good investment. However, if most coffee shops offer them all, what is the turning point that makes one be the busiest? Very often, the business with the best brand strategy will be the one to stand out.
Your brand is part of your product. It is also part of what you sell and can impact how much you sell it for. It is critical to understand that, under the customers’ perspective, your intangible value proposition (aka your branding) is just as important as your product itself.
Understand what is (actually) your product
One big but pretty common misconception is that the branding of a business is only its logo and colors when it is actually much more than that. According to David Ogilvy, known as the father of modern advertising, branding is “the intangible sum of a product’s attributes, its name, packaging, and price; its history, its reputation, and the way it’s advertised“. In other words, it is all the things that will build the customer’s perception of a business.
A coffee shop branding system contains the logo and visuals, of course. But it also comprises, its location, customer service, physical environment, music, overall mood, the quality of the products, reputation amongst the community, relationship with regular customers, and so on.
Selling a meal or a cup of coffee is actually the last of an extensive chain of events that leads your customer to choose your coffee shop over your competitor’s. You need to be on top of that process.
Incorporate your Mission Statement in your Brand Strategy
A brand’s mission statement is very commonly overlooked in the planning process of small businesses. When asked what is their purpose with the business, lots of owners will say: give me profit, of course. Well, I’m sorry to say that but your customers couldn’t care less about your profit margin.
- What is the intangible mission of your business?
- What is that your business does for its customers?
- What are its core values?
- How is your business part of the local community?
Take some time to answer those questions and you will find your mission statement.
Then literally put it into paper: phrase it in a way that your local community will understand. And incorporate that into your coffee shop branding tools not only by displaying that in every way you can (in logo, colors, texts in menus, and social media captions) but also using that as a guideline to take actions and decisions.
This is one of the strongest ways you can build your branding strategy. Your customers will be able to relate to your brand and your business on a whole other level. A much deeper level. And that will help your business slowly grow inside them. This is true strong branding.