Does the Raven’s Nest Coffee Shop in Colorado Springs, Colo., have better coffee than any other coffee shop? I have no clue. But they reinforced three simple marketing lessons to me on how a local business competes in a Starbucks world and never forgets it’s a relationship business, not a coffee business.
1. They greet me by name – two of the last three owners stop and make a point to remember me. It’s so simple and maybe even a bit shallow of me, but I like it and it makes me feel more connected.
2. The environment is friendly – when I walk in I feel comfortable, welcome. They always seem like they have had their coffee and are empathetic that I haven’t had mine. They get me! (And their blend is called Screaming Monkey and I just like saying that.)
3. They continue the connection online – Their social media posts are fun, engaging and personal. Yes, they show coffee, but they also show people and the personalities behind the business. I view facebook as a more personal medium and they do this well.
Sports is also a relationship business. These are simple things we can learn in the youth sports business. Parents still want to feel welcome. Even if we are crazy sports parents, we don’t want to be made to feel that way. We want to be greeted by name. We want to make a connection with our kids’ mentors and coaches.
A cup of coffee wouldn’t hurt either.