How your own story can help you craft a unique coffee brand

You are passionate about specialty coffee? That dream of opening an own coffee business sticks with you for a little while now already?

Not sure, where to start in terms of your future coffee brand, though?

Well, don’t look too far away! The most interesting stuff when it comes to an authentic brand lies within ourselves!

Especially when you’re just starting out with your coffee business, think about what YOU actually have to offer!

Is it your background?

Your former job or occupation?

Is it the country where you’ve grown up?

Is it a certain other passion maybe? Some hobby or interest?

Your future customers will love that about you! Let them look behind your curtains, let them know, who’s behind that counter preparing their coffee!

 You can even create brew cards for your customers to take home with them that has your branding on them as well.

You can even create brew cards for your customers to take home with them that has your branding on them as well.

Let your story shine through everything you’ll be creating for your brand.

Start with your concept and the WHY of your coffee business!

The WHY of your cafe, coffee shop or roasting business is the ONE thing, you want your customers coming back again and again. It’s this very thing, you actually want to be known for, even by your competitors!

So, let’s assume, you’ve been growing up in Mexico and at some point in your life you got to know and work together with wonderful farmers from Mexico and you decided, for your future cafe you’d only be offering coffees from different areas and farms within Mexico.

That’s a great start! Create the whole story of your cafe around this!

If you can create a brand name and logo that combines your own story of your origin and the sourcing of the coffee in that very country, you’ll be developing a strong and unique brand that cannot be copied, not even by your strongest competitor!

Do a brainstorming with your family and friends, get inspirations and play around with certain attributes (words and images) that fit to the story you already created.

Let that new design of your logo be part of everything you visibly create around your coffee brand, meaning, your coffee packaging.

You could even add some quotes about your own story and some interesting facts about the origin country/region/farm of the very coffee inside of the packaging label -, your interior inside of your (future) coffee business, all the flyers and menus you’re printing.

Speaking of the menu, let your story take over a big amount of your menu as well. Not just with your coffee drinks, where you can even create certain signature drinks, that will help you with becoming known as a cafe or coffee shop.

But also with your food! Create your own recipes or let your family and friends help you out here. I’m sure, you have some secret grandma cake recipes or certain savory dishes like soups and salads, that you loved as a child growing up in Mexico, if you’re planning on offering both, sweet and savory, items on your food menu!

Think about Marketing

Think about certain short term Marketing campaigns, too!

Like an opening event or some special offers to get more customers through your doors that would all have the touch of your story and your brand.

As with the opening event, think about creating it around the farms or areas your coffee is coming from. If you have real close connections to your farmers and you can afford it, invite him or her over to talk about the region where the coffee is coming from at the event.

You could even think about a certain playlist with music from that very country, or some art/photography exhibition of artists that are living in Mexico or have been growing up there as well.

When going for a certain strategy or concept with your coffee business, make sure, you’re consistent about it!

That means, if you’re creating everything in your business around your own story and you crafted a strong brand already offline, make sure, you’re doing the same with your online channels, your website, your blog if you have one - you could write about your farmers and the coffee they’re growing for example -, your newsletters and your social media channels as well.

Your over all message should have one tone, one voice!

How can you tell if that’s the case, you’re asking? Well, ask your friends if they’d still recognize you and your brand if someone put up a tweet or post, a package or whatever along with other examples without any obvious branding!

The most important thing, when creating a strong coffee brand, is, to be authentic! Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not, but rather be real about what your life is all about. Don’t go for trendy or fancy or “My competitors are doing it, so I gotta do it, too....!”

No! This is not what you want!

You want an authentic coffee brand, that your customers love to connect with and love to grab their coffee at!

Infuse your personality

You might have heard of this: Your energy is contagious!

That means, not just your personal and vocational background play a big part when creating a unique coffee brand, but also your behavior and your attitude!

You know, there’s a huge difference between someone just showing up and serving coffee  - or even worse a ‘walking complaint’ -, because this will translate to your customers, I assure you - and showing that you actually want to be where you are.

You're a fun guy, that everyone wants to hang around with?

Your customers just can't resist your warmth and welcoming attitude?

Your enthusiasm when it comes to roasting coffee is what people are talking about when they're talking about you?

Wonderful!  Go for exactly that! Because, it is not just what you do, but HOW you do it!

Your energy, your attitude and behavior is highly contagious! To your customers as well as your staff. 

‘Wow’ your customers with your own personality! Care about them, be genuine and pay attention to the little details!

You make a difference only by being who you are!

Start infusing everything you do with the genuine caring for your customers and your staff. People will tell other people about it!

Trust me, everything you do will have an impact on how people respond to you and the results you’re getting from it: More tips, happy staff and customers, more regulars.

What (personal) story did you create your coffee brand around? Let me know in the comments!