Barista Magazine

DEC 2017-JAN 2018

Serving People Serving Coffee Since 2005

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Page 86 of 107

HELP PEOPLE, MAKE FRIENDS, HAVE FUN at DILLANOS.COM DILLANOS COFFEE SAFETY WARNING: CONSUMING MAY INCREASE HAPPINESS & CAUSE YOU TO LOVE YOUR JOB AGAIN what you pay for,' and if you want to be taken seriously, and make a splash in an already saturated market, you don't want to cut corners." Your brand strategy should be used as a guide to achieve your goals, but if things aren't working out as planned, it won't hurt to modify your strategy. Place little bets with desired objectives. Let the outcomes of those smaller controlled experiments—whether they are events, pop-ups, or marketing promotions—determine how you proceed. Re-evaluate and try again until you are reaching the de- sired outcomes. Just be sure that all your objectives are aligned with your brand values and your mission. This can be daunting, but it's another part of the process where a professional like Elizabeth can help. She recommends that you "fi nd an experienced designer and marketing director, or an agency that does both. Share your goals and company mission with them, and if they do their job well, they will help you develop a strategy that guides you towards achieving them." If you stray too far from your original purpose, you might be viewed as inauthentic, ultimately damag- ing your brand—and protecting your brand, your reputation, and how your company is perceived is really the ultimate purpose for having a brand strategy. 4. Spread the word. Now that you have a brand, a target market, and a set of goals, get your brand out there. Build a website, consider what social media options are available and relevant, and learn about targeted advertising to begin connect- ing with potential customers. Make sure that you stay active and your accounts are updated regularly. It can be more work than you expect to maintain active social media profi les, but it's important that they aren't neglected. You should also be thoughtful about which networks you are using. "Find- ing the right networks and areas to focus on is key for developing a marketing strategy," says Jenn Chen, a freelance coffee-market- ing consultant. "Too often, I see companies thinking they need to be on a network be- cause they see everyone else on it (yet, their target market isn't)." If you're screaming as loud as you can in a venue where no one is listening, it's a waste of time. If it's too much for you to handle on your own, consider asking an employee who is pas- sionate about the brand if they want to help manage the company's online presence. If the extra work doesn't fall under their typical job requirements, be sure to reward them, either monetarily or otherwise. There are also professionals who offer social media marketing services, like Jenn, who specializes in these efforts. Jenn suggests prioritizing your tasks: "You can do all the social media as an owner, but is that the best use of your time?" Recognizing when to dele- gate or outsource is something all successful business owners eventually learn. A strong social media presence can add incredible value to a business of any size. "Investing in a social media strategy will go a long way," Jenn says. "It's no longer enough to post a photo of a cup of coffee. Stand out with great photos, captions, and a deliberate posting strategy." Be- ing purposeful and keeping your brand in mind, even with the photos you post online, will help build a stronger and more consistent image of your company. Apart from the obvious online marketing efforts, consider how your brand aligns with other companies. Look for like-minded brands in other industries with whom you can partner for promotions, events, and collaborations. Get creative about how you spread the word. Peo- ple love coffee, and most businesses won't turn down an opportunity to have you providing coffee to their customers if there is mutual benefi t for everyone involved. A win-win for the win. 87

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