It is no secret that customers have a lot of options when they are choosing where to grab a cup of coffee or a quick lunch. Your cafe might even be one of many on the same street. How can your space stand out from the crowds? A unique brand will set your coffee shop apart from the rest. Every cafe sells coffee but it is not always the cafe with the best beans that sells the most cups. The busiest cafe in the neighborhood is often the one with the best branding.
A well-thought-out branding strategy will bring customers into your cafe while delivering a clear message. Keep reading to learn more about the power of branding and how you can develop an effective branding strategy for your coffee shop.
Developing your brand will take time and effort so it helps to know why it is essential for growth. The simple reason is that your brand is how customers feel about your business and a good feeling will bring more people in.
Every business is already displaying some version of a brand to their community, whether they know it or not. It is up to the business owner to develop and perfect their brand.
Customers are not only buying a beautiful pour-over with a flakey croissant. They are also paying for your brand. Cafes and restaurants depend on repeat customers to keep sales up. Strong brand identity on Instagram, Facebook, and in-store will encourage people to identify with your mission and return. A trustworthy image is the best way to show your local community and customer base what your business stands for.
A brand and its mission statement should be indistinguishable. Its development is a crucial first step in starting any business. Your cafe´s mission statement needs to make it clear what your cafe does, why it does it, and what it aspires to become. Phrase it in a way that the local community will understand and relate to. Let them know how your mission statement distinguishes your cafe from the rest.
Your mission statement shouldn’t be lengthy. Keep it short and easy to understand. Stress the importance of it to your staff so they know what you are trying to achieve. The day to day realities of operating a business will be demanding but it’s important to not forget your mission statement. Ensure that your cafe lives up to it every day.
Your core values are what define your business. It is what is most important to your company and how it behaves. Values should determine every choice you make regarding your cafe, from staffing, to marketing, and to the sourcing of menu ingredients. Your values should be part of your branding strategy and support your mission statement.
Establish your core values carefully and communicate them to your community and staff. Don´t make the mistake of thinking your values are obvious. Are you a small business owner with a desire to buy local ingredients, give the best possible customer experience to the community you love, and have a warm and welcoming space? These are wonderful values that should be part of the conversation you open up with your community.
As a business owner, you have to live these values daily. A good leader does not simply tell employees what the company’s values are, they constantly strive to meet these values themselves. If you educate staff members on why quality is a core value, then they will refuse to serve customers any product that doesn’t meet the high standard you have set.
Once customers have experienced high-quality service and tasted the lovingly crafted coffee at your cafe, they will recognize that your business stands behind its values. This feeling of trust can turn a one-time visitor into a proud brand ambassador.
Once you have defined what your cafe stands for, you should begin tweaking and perfecting the visual aspects of your brand. This includes your cafe´s name, logo, signage, loyalty cards, and menu. A unique name and atmosphere will stand out.
If you have no design experience or are feeling overwhelmed, then working with a professional designer is the way to go. However, we do have some tips to keep in mind if you feel like designing it yourself.
Make sure your logo is instantly recognizable and eye-catching. Don’t clutter the logo, the name and a simple icon are often enough. Keep your brand’s identity in mind when designing it. A fun, late-night cafe might have vivid colors while a minimalist cafe may have muted tones. Make sure the text is legible and clean in every size. Remember, the logo has to look equally good on a small loyalty card or mobile phone as it does on a large sign.
Never underestimate the power of a good logo. A unique logo can bring customers in and encourage customer loyalty. It will pop on Instagram and Facebook and intrigue social media users into clicking through to your content. Your best customers will be happy to wear a memorable logo on a shirt or post content on their social media sites, raising your brand awareness.
A simple, carefully crafted menu designed in line with your branding strategy looks modern and professional. Your menu is a unique opportunity to showcase your mission statement. Be transparent and let your customers know that you have fresh, locally roasted coffee and where the beans come from. Customers increasingly expect more information about the origin of products and will appreciate your cafe´s transparency. Coffeelovers are more likely to order and return if you show that you are knowledgeable about your beans, their origin and processing.
After the coffee, think about the food. Will you be serving healthy lunches or sticking to baked goods and treats? Make sure your food menu complements your cafe. It is better to have a few great items that really shine instead of a complicated menu where nothing stands out.
A strong online presence is a crucial part of any branding marketing strategy. Showcase your logo prominently on Instagram and Facebook. Social media cannot be skipped when it comes to bringing customers in and boosting sales. Your beautiful in-store designs, signage, and products make great online content. Share your cafe´s personality and engage with your followers.
Social media is also the perfect place to share your company’s values and mission with the community. Post content that highlights how your cafe is living up to its core values and how they can fit in with the customer’s lifestyle. Get creative with your content while keeping your brand identity in mind. Check out our article on attracting more followers on social media.
Does your favorite cafe have a unique brand? Let us know in the comments, we would love to check it out!
Bianka discovered her love for specialty coffee while studying English Literature during her university years in the United States. She believes that a cup of coffee is a writer’s best companion and is always seeking the best new cafe in each new city she visits. An avid traveler, she has called sunny Madrid her home for the past three years. Her hobbies include baking, yoga, and reading.