What would happen if you stopped trying to sell to people and just started providing them with products, marketing, and an atmosphere that was relevant to them in that moment?

I’m taking stock right now at Lemonjello’s.

Colors. Products. The Space. How we interact. It’s all on the chopping block because I had a realization.

  1. People ultimately buy positive emotions not products. I’ve said this before.
  2. People are more likely to frequent your shop more often if those emotions are relevant and not random.

A college student or a young professional might be looking for a social environment to do work in. A family out for a walk with the kids might need a restroom. The tourist could be exploring and coming from a place of curiosity.

Those are practical reasons for someone to come in your coffee shop.

The next layer is the subconscious questions we ask ourselves. Do my friends come here? Do they carry products that I love or that intrigue me? Do I like the colors? Can I navigate the layout? Does it feel like my sort of place? Do I like the people who work here?

If enough of those questions have positive answers, then you have a loyal return patron.

You can either let this happen at random or you can decide to engage your business and influence people’s experience of it.

So how do you influence positive relevant emotions?

Ask questions regularly to key customers & get to know their experience. Periodically refresh your branding. Change your advertising and marketing more often, seasonally, or for the intended audience. Carry seasonal products. Do flash sales. Use the words “limited time” more often and hold to it so things seem special. Use better, healthier ingredients. Charge more (this is a whole separate blog post, but seriously…). Move furniture. Do seasonal deep cleaning. It shows you care. Start a newsletter. Start a club. Is your shop cluttered? Declutter.

Do you need more light? Different colors? A different kind of image on social media? Is your shop really social? Find ways to encourage that more. Do they see you as the authority on coffee in your market? Act as that authority. Do you have a new coffee or pastry you think someone would like? Tell them. What are the organizations your patrons support? Support those. What are the obstacles they have when they come in? Remove them.

I could go on and on. The important thing to realize here is that if you ask the right questions and watch/listen more intentionally, they are all telling you what they need. If you act on that knowledge, you will provide more positive relevant emotions to more people. They might not even realize why, but they will love you. They will come back. And they will bring their friends and family with them.