May 08, 2024

Finding Your Crowd-Pleasing Coffee

By Oaks The Coffee Guy
Finding Your Crowd-Pleasing Coffee
As a coffee entrepreneur, one of the biggest challenges I face is walking the line between pleasing the masses and staying true to my personal tastes. The coffee world is extremely subjective - one person's beloved daily brew is another's bitter disappointment.

I'll admit, my preferences lean towards the bold, exotic flavors of African origins like Kenya. However, through customer feedback, I've learned that these aren't always the crowd-pleasing favorites. More often, smoother, balanced profiles from South America tend to reign supreme for the general coffee drinker.

So what's a coffee business to do? Prioritize the unique flavors you love, or give the people what they want? In my experience, it's best to start with the latter, especially when first building your brand.

Mainstream Origins Like Peru, Mexico and Brazil

When you look at the data, it's clear that origins like Peru, Mexico and Brazil make up some of the most popular and accessible flavor profiles, especially for those new to specialty coffee. Their mild, nutty, chocolate notes provide a familiar, comforting base that goes down easy.

Don't get me wrong, I relish a beautifully bright, fruity Ethiopian coffee. But I recognize that's an acquired taste that many may not be ready for if they're used to darker, heavier roast profiles. 

That's why I recommend easing into your coffee journey with some tried-and-true South American classics first before expanding your horizons. They provide a great entry point without too many flavor fireworks right away.

The Importance of Fresh Roasted Coffee

No matter the origin, the other crucial factor I emphasize is freshness. When you order coffee online, there's no way to know how long those beans have been sitting around.

My solution? I only batch roast and package my coffee in small amounts to ensure every order is fresh. It's my unique selling proposition compared to endless supplies sitting in warehouses. You're getting premium, just-roasted coffee without any age or staleness.

From there, I let the quality and flavor speak for itself while consumers adjust to higher caliber coffee at their own pace. My bolder African offerings are available for the adventurous ones searching for something more exotic down the line.

Slowly Converting Coffee Drinkers

The reality is, most consumers have become accustomed to the mass-marketed, lower quality coffees from major brands. It can be difficult to change their minds about what a truly excellent, fresh cup of coffee can taste like.

My approach is to ease them in with those universally crowd-pleasing origins first. Then, once they experience the higher caliber and freshness, I can slowly introduce more unique, challenging flavors. It's all about transitioning their preferences gradually.

That's the balance - giving the people what they want now while still making my distinctive coffees available for when they're ready. It keeps the masses happy while leaving room for curious explorers. The best of both worlds for this coffee entrepreneur.

Leave a comment