In the previous article, we broke down the differences in the marketing strategies of two hypothetical business owners and discussed why there is no one-size-fits-all solution to marketing. It’s an interesting read, so make sure to read it before continuing to read this sequel.

To recap, Kate is opening a new café and wants to promote the grand opening. She chose a popular downtown location with plenty of foot traffic, nearby attractions, and businesses. However, there are multiple cafes within walking distance of hers, so her challenge will be attracting attention and new customers to her new location and getting people to choose her café over the others.

What could be special about a coffee shop? That depends on how you position and convey the value to your target audience. Let’s step back and consider why we pay $4 at popular coffee shops instead of $1 at the gas station. Brand value.

Is Kate just selling coffee and pastries like every other café and restaurant? Or is she solving a problem?

Here are some of the steps I would use to help her define her value, and I include a breakdown of each one below:

-Identify your target customers

-Identify your nicheIdentify your customers’ universe

-Identify your customers’ problems

-Identify and convey the solutions you bring to your customers


  1.     Identify your target customers

“Everyone” is too broad. Although “everyone” could enjoy her coffee, who is her real target? Said differently, who is her PERFECT customer? Judging by the busy street full of office attire, her local audience is mostly comprised of business professionals.

  1.     Identify your niche

How are you different than the big brand down the street? Let’s start with the value of your product. Coffee aficionados will agree they love how it wakes them up, makes them feel energized and focused, and the feeling of that glorious first sip that fills your mouth and heart with delightful satisfaction. You’re not selling caffeinated black liquid; you’re selling the feeling it gives the consumer.

Let’s go further.

Kate needs to identify what’s “special” about her coffee? Where are the beans grown? Are they fair trade or organic? What’s special about the brewing process? Is there something magical about the taste or freshness? Tell me the story behind your coffee and help me connect my emotions to how it evolved and became this delicious cup of comfort, warmth, and joy I’m holding in my hands.

Do you offer specialty options or ingredients and an assortment of add-ons that others don’t? Research your competitors and offer what they lack (i.e. natural sweeteners, dairy free milk options, gluten-free pastries, or healthy on-the-go meals and snacks).

  1.     Identify your customer’s universe

Who cares about “organic, fair-trade, supreme coffee”?

     Coffee enthusiasts. People who are incentivized to wake up because they’ll get that wonderful coffee buzz that will power their morning.

     Health enthusiasts. If someone is serious about attaining better health and performance, they’ll welcome convenient, healthier alternatives to their favorite habits.

     The environmentally conscious buyer. Organic, fair trade is just better – for everyone! This buyer will be willing to pay more, walk further, or stand in line longer for better quality.

     The status buyer. People try to justify emotional purchase decisions with logic, but status value can turn commodities into necessities.

  1.     Identify your customer’s problems

What’s a problem you could solve for business professionals who love quality coffee? Let’s think about what their morning is like.

Busy? Sometimes stressful?

What could the working mom who woke up at 5am to get herself and her kids ready, drop them off at daycare, drive to work, and rush to arrive at the office on time possibly need?

A coffee 😉 – but more specifically – a delicious, comforting cup of energy that she can conveniently and quickly grab on her way to the office. She’s also likely to appreciate and come to rely on your freshly made, grab-and-go breakfast and lunch options for the days she just didn’t have time to prep for. And what about when she’s craving that midday pick-me-up, but doesn’t have time to leave her office?

  1.     Identify and convey the solutions you bring to your customers

“Superior coffee” (if you can quantify that and convince your customers they care about it) could be enough extra value, but what other value can you add to your offer? What if you added a feature on your mobile site that allowed patrons to custom order their caffeine elixirs in advance and schedules their preferred pickup time? Or better yet, could you deliver it to their office? Could you throw in a group discount, or offer a “buy 9, get 1 free” offer to incentive them to place an order on behalf of their coworkers?

Do everything you can to make yourself their favorite place to buy their favorite coffee.

Give them a reason to recommend you and showcase your products and services to their friends on their social media (the new #WordOfMouthMarketing).

The customer’s experience is everything. People don’t remember what you do; they remember how you make them feel.


Hypothetical Kate is welcome for this detailed, personalized strategy! We hope this example will help very real YOU customize your own plan of action to market your business or service with excellence.

We’d also be more than happy to get involved and help bring your marketing strategy to life!

Schedule a free consultation, and we’ll set a time!