I'm not just coffee, please reply!

javaluva

New member
May 15, 2005
51
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USA
I own a small coffee house in a small town...For the first 3 months, we soothed our throats with warm coffee, because we had to explain to the WHOLE entire town that "We're a coffeehouse". Perks Cafe. Very few knew what a coffeehouse was. (Now I live in a town full of experts). My problem is... we serve a light deli menu, and there is a coffee shop from the 50's that is just down the street, and there is a "cafe" 2 doors down, (greasy spoon) no coffee...well generic, on the burner all day and now a cappuccino machine, (to put me out of business :? ) I have 2 groups. Those that see we are both "cafe" and think that I am FOOD, because he is, or those that are new, and think we're both coffee. I want to change. I don't know if it's a matter of taking off the "Cafe", or adding something else to Perks. I only serve a lite deli menu from 11am to 2pm but now the greasy spoon closes at 2!??? I might be wrong...the food is a neccesary evil... But what do I do? Suggestions please. I am still explaining that I am a coffeehouse and that he is a restaurant. Yet, when I come in contact with new people, it burns my pot when they say, " Oh, I dont drink coffee. I have 10 times what Strbux has, and to top it off...People ask me if my name is Perks. Go figure...
 

celement

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Apr 17, 2005
130
0
Modesto, CA
Ouch...my problem is similar in that our business name "Coffee Element" does not bode will to selling cold or blended drinks. Its a 105 degrees out today and I can't convince anyone that our fruit smoothies are even HERE..

As to your issue I'd try an affordable solution - banners. I just bought 8 outdoor banners to hange - 2'ft by 6ft with large letters only about $30 each delivered. Search ebay custom vinyl banners. You might do something that indicates a "Mocha" special or a Latte thing - something that resonates with Cafe.
 
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javaluva

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May 15, 2005
51
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USA
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Thank you! I have graphics on the bottom of my 25ft window that says Espresso, Latte, Cappuccino, and more. I was just thinking...or wondering how to get the "other side" to realize that I am more than just coffee. I want to be known as the Liquid/beverage company. I love the beverage business. If it's wet and drinkable, non alcoholic, I make it. Don't get me wrong, I make really good money at the shop, it's just that after 5 years, somewhere down the road, I have created a monster, and it's got me stumped.
 
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javaluva

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May 15, 2005
51
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USA
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just an update....guess what? Greasy spoon got shut down, padlocked, and I got their cappuccino business...what now? He bought a cappuccino machine from international coffee...no offense to them...and uses toilet water for coffee, and now his customers are coming to me wanting cappuccino. It's like deja brew...just like the first day we opened. Explaining...and they are not liking what I have. Trust me, I am trying to talk them into cafe au lait's BUT they say that they want a real cappuccino. So, remember...alot of people don't know who, or what we are. we're in our own little world...
 

ElPugDiablo

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Jul 16, 2004
991
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Hartford and New Haven, CT
A quote about doing business with a coffee theme:

Exposure plus 95 cents might buy you a decent cup of coffee. The key is to 'position' yourself in your market as the expert, the resource, the only person your prospect would ever even THINK of doing business with, or referring to others.
- Bob Burg

When you are the expert, then you can have the coffeehouse you always want to have...of course when all else failed, sell them jumbo almond mocha mint white chocolate lattes for $4.50 plus tax :twisted:
 
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