Archive for April, 2009

You Wouldnt Drive on a Flat Tire Would You?

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009

You Wouldn’t Drive on a Flat Tire Would You?

It sounds ridiculous but this past weekend I was eye witness to the sparks, smoke and the sounds of metal and rubber to asphalt as a poor soul was grinding his rim down trying to make it home or to the local service station.  In retrospect this will turn out to be a bad idea and quite a costly one.

This same situation applies to the retail environment.  If you won’t drive around on a flat tire then why would you keep under-performing or non-performing coffees on your shelves?   They are flat tires on what should be your well-oiled retail machine.

Consumers love to see, smell and taste new and exciting coffees, so keep your shelves full of ones that are either great or solid sellers and ones that are relevant to the current or upcoming holiday and season.   Utilize dynamic and eye-catching point-of-sale materials to promote, keep them neatly aligned, and clearly priced.    KMO now offers a stunning line-up of airpot/bin tags, 8 ½ x 11 shelf talkers and posters from 12 x 18 to 16 x 20.  JMC Airpot Label Sample

Brew up a sample of the day or week and sample, sample, sample!  Put a large jar of this special coffee right at the cash register and encourage “Power Hits” to excite the nose.  Have ready-to-go ¼, ½ and 1 lb. bags of coffee at a special price to stimulate interest and sales of the coffee.  Impulse sales rule!

There is always a group of coffees that seem to pass the test of time and become consistent best sellers.  These coffees are one’s your customers cannot live without and are one’s that you become known for in your marketplace.  Jamaican Me Crazy flavored coffee is one of these coffees, it has been a consistent Best Seller for well over 15 years here at KMO.  With over 300+ flavors we have a Best Seller just waiting for you.

Certainly be aware of what your customers are asking for, if you’re not always on location then place a tablet at the register and instruct your staff to jot down any requests or suggestions about certain coffees.

Trends are another way to seize an opportunity to become known for carrying a particular coffee or category of coffees.  Fair-Trade Organic was once considered a passing faze, that was 10 years ago or longer.  This category of specialty coffee continues to be one of the fastest growing areas within our industry and customers are becoming vocal in their desire to drink and purchase these coffees.  FT Org. El Toro Loco Blend Airpot Label Sample

It is never a good idea to try and extend the life of a holiday coffee beyond that holiday.  Put it on sale quickly after the holiday and if it doesn’t sell take it off the shelf.  You should also be brewing this coffee so you can increase your profits both from bulk and brewed sales.  You can also give the holiday coffee a new name, for example New Year’s Eve Blend can become Winter Magic until you are through with the coffee.  Seasonal coffees are much more forgiving since there is more time to promote the coffee and gain resells during the course of the season.

Driving around on a flat tire doesn’t make sense, will ruin your car, your wallet and your day.  When you have a flat, stop, fix it and get going again towards your destination… SUCCESS!

For more information visit and for more ideas visit , for up-to-date information on Kaffe Magnum Opus visit or to contact me directly at

Employee Training – Do they hear you?

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009


Make them hear you…employee training

  Providing your staff with all the knowledge you can when training them will provide a bounty of dividends in the future. A well trained employee is worth their weight in gold, both to the business and to the customer. Make sure that your employees are prepared for anything, from how you want your place to look to how you want them to handle unusual inquiries. Otherwise they’ll learn in front of your customer, which is considered the worst place for them to learn.                                                       


  You wouldn’t go away for several days & leave teenagers home alone without rules. You would give then boundaries and rules you’d expect them to follow & things you’d expect them to do. You’d leave them with a definite idea of what is accepted and what is not. Extend the same principal to your employees.

   If you don’t train your employees they will have no context for their actions. If they say the wrong things, or act inappropriately, your customers may get bad information or not information. This may diminish their chances of buying from you. Even if only one employee out of the whole crew gives bad service, you end up with all your customers’ experience being at risk. You must give a structure so every customer gets the same message. Scripts do this.


   If a customer asks “I was wondering if your company did favor’s for parties, my sister is getting married and she wants 2oz. coffee packs to give to her guests.”

Your employee, if trained properly will either know this answer or will be able to say “I’m sorry our Manger isn’t here today but he does work tomorrow in the morning if you wanted to reach him then or I can leave him your information.” 

   A script would have put them in charge of the situation, instead of flustered or telling the customer “No we don’t do that” when really you do.

   When a script is consistently well-presented, it forms the framework of interactions between people, like your employees and customers. When done well, it sounds quite natural. Writing a script for an untrained person allows them to go through the sale or answer questions with confidence. It leaves no room for error which is good for your business and for the customer because they are getting the proper information.


For more information visit and for more ideas visit , for up-to-date information on Kaffe Magnum Opus visit or to contact me directly at