In a world of this…
… It’s refreshing to see this:
A ‘loyalty’ card that rewards your DISloyalty. Go away and come back when you’ve explored some other coffee shops, says Prufrock. This isn’t to encourage you to wallow in a triple syrup shot babyccino topped with a floating berg of whipped cream pocked with oozing marshmallows… But to enjoy proper coffee, from real beans made by people who know the difference between a filter and an Americano, a ristretto from an espresso, an aeropress from a French press. Go broaden your coffee horizons. Your taste buds will enjoy the adventure.
Once you’ve ticked off a few of these cafes (as you can see, some of the best in London), Prufrock Coffee – itself one of the finest, with one of the greatest baristas in the world at its helm – will say thank you by making you a coffee for free. The camaraderie and passion, with encouragement and information readily shared, is what you might imagine to be the antithesis of “good business sense”. Yet it is slowly rousing a nation of tea sippers to the smell of freshly ground coffee.
Jude and I recently went to interview the playful irreverent maverick BrewDog (film coming soon!), and we were amazed and impressed – and reassured – that they collaborate with their competitors: inviting them to brew with them at their brewery, selling their beers online and in the BrewDog bars. Their openness and transparency shows that they have absolute confidence in the quality of what they’re making- so you can’t help but trust that they are showing you the very best. Moreover, it shows they’re part of a bigger mission– be it craft beer or, like Prufrock, proper coffee- educating you with variety and taste and experience. You will understand the breadth available to you- and what you like, love, loathe. If you don’t like it now, you’ll never like it. But this isn’t important – it isn’t important whether you buy their brand or their competitor – what is important is that you’re sharing a passion for something well made.
Don’t treat every competitor as competition; if you share the same values and goals think about how you can support each other instead. This can benefit all parties and shows an assuredness and confidence that’s very attractive.