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Today The Coffee Boys move into the funky new Web 2.0 world – we’re getting down there with the hip media kids and at the moment they’re staring at us in a “freak” fashion but we’re here to stay.

Hugh and I will be producing a lot more of these in the future but hopefully it provides an easier way for you to digest our information and spoutings!

So the number one key is…

Mindset.

It is entirely up to you how you deal with this. In a few years time when we are moving back into another boom there will still be loads of coffee shops out there. And a few will not have made it – no doubt about it. Which side of the fence will you be on?

Will you be like some of my clients, coincidentally the ones who keep working “on their business” regardless of the economy, who haven’t noticed any change in their takings?

or…

Will you be like those operators I talk to who are all doom and gloom and are expecting not to make it. Who are simply working harder day in and day out and sticking their heads in the sand like an ostrich?

Will you be reading and nodding your head sagely at article like this on the MSN money site?

The end of the world is Nigh!!!

or will you be working away at training, developing new products and marketing and casually be noticing articles like this?

No it isn’t!

It’s up to you.

Johnnie Richardson


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I love Malcolm Galdwell, and indeed love this subject of dealing only with the customers perception because it’s the only thing that actually matters. Of course I agree with that … it’s a bit like our constant reminders in the book that ‘Its all about the money’ ,

.. however consider this with coffee ;

The customer very often doesn’t know that they don’t know and you have a responsibility to raise their expectation, teach them how to buy good coffee, not just sell them something mediocre because its easier … That’s short term behavior and those businesses that make real money are the ones that can take and behave with longer time frames … Yes its more difficult but that’s why you are better than the big green branding machine on the corner of nearly every block now …

Think of it this way …. You don’t have a choice! Quality is the price of entry. Build your brand on Taste and let you customer trust that you will not cut corners in the delivery of that great taste …. Trust me.. there is no other way ..

This reminded me of what I used to write about for Theme Magazine’s fantastic Smallbeans publication before it sadly died because it was ahead of its time and before I got together with my coffeeboy mate!

Extract from my ‘Show me the coffee experience’ article from Theme Magazine ….

http://www.mondiale.co.uk/smallbeans/2newcontributor.html

Today’s consumer wants to be emotionally engaged, they need to have a relationship. You have to deliver at that level. They need to trust you. That relationship, whether that’s with an idea, a brand, a product or a service – if you don’t give it to them, you’re certainly never going to be able to charge a premium. You’ve got to remember, brands are only invented to charge a premium. That is the purpose of a brand; it didn’t have any other – Recognise me, desire me, have faith in me, trust me, pay more for me.

So what’s your difference? In the world of Coffee this is critical, after all, every cup of coffee is different and while consistency is the name of the game and quality is the price of entry it is the story that will win the day – Your Story – and your experience.

The essence of a great coffee experience is the perception in the minds of the consumer and while that total experience means great tasting coffee for sure – that is now a given (so let’s forget about the 80% of operators who actually sell bad coffee for the purposes of this article). The bar has risen again amidst the age of the never satisfied customer and your coffee experience has to look, feel, sound and smell fantastic too.

We must create feeling and be emotional about what we are selling. For years, the large coffee chains have devoted tremendous resources to the branding process. – It is an assumption that their coffee will taste good but a fundamental difference with coffee is that it is a cuisine and not at all like a tin of Coca Cola or even a bottle of wine that will taste the same every time. The key is controlling the brewing factors and that takes care, appreciation, time, money and requires excellent planning if you are going to produce this consistency on a daily basis for your regular customer.”

Hugo

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