If you don’t create a point of difference with your cafe, coffee shop or restaurant, then you are not really giving your potential customers any reason why they should come to you and spend their hard earned money.
Being the most conveniently located business to where that customer is isn’t enough.
And being the cheapest will only take you so far and most likely in a backwards direction. Plus being the cheapest often means that you will never to able to increase your prices. The minute a newer cafe opens up down the road and decides that being the cheapest is also their marketing strategy, people will buy from them, unless you decide to reduce your already low profit prices. Not a great plan!
Creating your USP
According to the Silver Chef Hospitality Industry Success Index 2018, there are several areas where you can look to create a unique selling proposition (USP). Some of these areas might be:
- Cuisine and branding
- Home cooked style food
- Open kitchen so customers can see and hear their meal being cooked
- Community focused
- Constantly evolving
- Fresh food and family operated
- Fresh locally sourced produce and quality ingredients
- Exciting food
- Personable service
- Intimate space
- Healthy food, social and environmental conscience
- Locally sourced produce
- Offering an exclusive experience to your customers
For Cafés & Coffee Shops
- We also sell hand painted original art
- Everything on the menu is made on-site
- 100% organic food
- We look after most dietary requirements
- Located in a heritage building
- We make our own brand of cider
- Old fashioned service (the good type)
- Best coffee
- Cool funky vibe, situated in a laneway and open late
- Unusual creative menu
- Value for money
- Space and different levels of seating
- Consistent opening hours
- Something that will have your customers telling their friends about it
- Something that can’t be easily copied
Whate ever you decide, make it very specific and meaningful.
While most people understand that success comes from having a plan, including a marketing strategy, it seems that many café owners wonder why they need a point of uniqueness at all. That there should be room for dozens of similar café businesses. The fact is, there isn’t, and this style of café will ultimately struggle or lose business to their competitors.
Last year a new coffee shop open near my home and when I went in to try their coffee I got to talking to the owner. I was asking about how they were marketing their business, given that in the same group of shops there was already a very successful coffee shop. She was under the impression that her coffee would speak for itself and nothing else was required. Unfortunately it didn’t and even more unfortunately that shop is now closed. It only traded for just over 4 months so the closure would have cost the owners a significant amount of their hard earned money.
If you are still struggling to find your USP it probably will come from one of these areas: quality, price, service, delivery, speed, convenience, and experience.
For instance, if you are a lunchtime cafe in a business area you might use speed as at least one of your USP's. "Enjoy a restaurant quality lunch and be back in the office inside 30 minutes". I actually did something like this in my restaurant after the Fringe Benefit Tax ruling in the eighties and it was very successful.
What ever you decide is your unique point of difference, once you find it, then make a big deal about it.
Tell your customers about it in everything you do. Advertise it, put it on your wall, in all your social media marketing, in your conversations, print in on your business card, receipts and be proud of it.
Let us do the hard work and source the right equipment for your Restaurant or Commercial Kitchen
Our goal at SCK is to source and sell you products that will add value to your business.
We power your kitchen!