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Cafe Business: How To Promote Your Coffee Shop

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(Here's a disclaimer: All the photos you see in this article are free to download here!)

For more than a few of us, a cup of coffee to start a day is almost essential.

As a cafe owner, the second most important thing is good coffee to ensure the success of your business. The most important thing? It’s how you do marketing. You’re obligated to promote your cafe in a way that not only attracts customers but also retains them.

Here are seven marketing ideas that can help your cafe get the best return on investment:

Set up an attractive storefront

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For a brick-and-mortar business, your shopfront is often the first impression you give customers. Even when the store is closed, the facade communicates with any customers walking by.

It only takes a few seconds for someone to decide if they like the look of your cafe. A well-designed storefront perfectly reflects the personality and vibe of your cafe. From hyper minimalist to vintage-inspired coffee shops, set up a storefront that stands out from the crowd and persuades consumers to come in for a quick shot of caffeine.

Flip through architectural magazines, find inspiration from cafes you admire, get to know the basics of design and aesthetics, and don’t forget to put your heart into it.

Takeaway cup sleeves

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A cup without a logo is just a cup. Put a cup sleeve with your brand’s logo on it, and it has become a powerful marketing tool that sits perfectly in your customer’s palms. It’s a subtle way to nudge those who have already supported your business to support it again.

Cup sleeves are designed to protect your hands from the hot drink. They’re also a simple invention that has profoundly impacted the cafe business. Talk about killing two birds with one stone.

A strong social media presence

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People are willing to travel to check out the latest, trendiest cafes. And social media is where they’ll discover you.

It’s essential to get your foundations solid – create a profile, add your location, opening hours, and contact number – before you jump onto TikTok trends and live streams. Make your cafe discoverable on Apple Maps and Google Maps, and use professional quality photos to stand out amongst the crowd.

A social media profile on every platform isn’t necessary – know your target audience and the social platform they are most likely on.

Develop a social media plan. We’ve listed here some content pillars to boost your social media presence:

  • Lifestyle photos

  • Behind-the-scenes

  • Meet the team

  • Coffee preparation demonstration

  • Reshare user-generated content

  • Announcements

  • Promote seasonal menu items

Showcase your brews, and take photos

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To successfully run a cafe business today, it’s simply not enough to close a sale. For a cafe to succeed, you must build customer loyalty and foster a relationship. One way to do this is by showing them the processes in the kitchen. What’s going on at the coffee machine? Who is brewing your morning rocket fuel?

After that, share the beautiful photos you have captured on the internet. What’s a better way to attract customers if not for the actual photos of your product? If you’re not savvy with cameras and hiring a professional isn’t within your budget, consider using stock photo agencies like 123RF for great-quality images.

Set up a professional cafe website

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It's great to maximize the exposure of your cafe to the internet. The best cafe websites have professional images and an intuitive layout that makes navigating the site easy. Not only should the website be an extension of your cafe's ambiance, but it should also have a personality that is unique to your cafe.

On your website, you could include an 'About Us' page to detail your origin story, share the reason behind your cafe, sell other products like coffee mugs and specialty coffee beans, or loyalty cards.

Offer deals from time to time

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Rewarding your customers through promotions is a great way to build customer loyalty and satisfaction. Not only does it encourage repeat customers to return more often, but it will also make it more attractive to first-time customers to visit.

You can offer deals in many ways, such as discounts for reusable mugs, half-price refills, a coffee and cake set deal on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 50% off your second order on Monday mornings, lunch specials and more.

Craft seasonal specials and unique menus

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Seasons change, and your menu should change too. When festivities roll around, customers will begin to wonder about the seasonal specials brewing in your cafe. Adding interesting new flavors and blends will keep your cafe exciting. The latest additions to your menu can also make for a social media post on your digital platforms.


Are you ready to start your cafe business?

Marketing and business trends are constantly evolving, so quickly adapting and pivoting to new strategies and ideas is key to a business staying afloat and thriving. Following these simple yet effective ideas will make your coffee shop the next big thing.

Here at 123RF, we’ve curated a vast library of high-quality images just like the ones we used for this article. The cool thing is that they’re all free to download. Are you feeling excited?

Click here to try it out and use them immediately for your cafe business!


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