Promotion ideas play a crucial role in any coffee shop’s success, but how can you convince potential customers to make a switch from a well-known franchise?

A strong digital presence is important, but print marketing can help you really connect with the local community and create a long-standing customer base, so it’s important to consider both.

1. Flyer in the right places, to the right people

An effective way to appeal to potential customers is by handing out flyers or leaflets in the street.

To fully make an impact, consider where and when you’re going to distribute them.

Evaluate your target audience and distribute accordingly. For example, you could target young professionals during their commute by offering leaflets to them outside a train or bus station.

Not only are leaflets and flyers cost-effective, they’re quick to print, ideal for a last-minute event or promotion.

2. Offer an incentive to visit

Whether it’s a freebie, discount or deal, an attention-grabbing voucher works well for both drawing in new customers and rewarding loyal regulars.

You can add them to your existing leaflet designs by adding a perforated edging to them, featuring your offer.

Once your offer is in place, hand them out in the streets to encourage recipients to visit your coffee shop. Or, drop them through the surrounding neighbourhood’s letterboxes, so they have a reason to visit later.

3. Reward customers with loyalty cards

Loyalty cards are a great way to reward your customers and give them an incentive to keep coming back to your coffee shop on a regular basis.

A stamp loyalty card with an offer such as ‘buy nine coffees and get the 10th one free’ is the simplest way to do this.

If you find business is slower on a certain day of the week, you can introduce a ‘Double Stamp Day’ to increase footfall – giving customers who make a purchase during that day two stamps on their card instead of one.

4. Grab their attention with promotional banners

A promotional banner situated outside on the pavement will help attract customers into your coffee shop.

As this is the first thing people will see about your business, make sure your advertisement uses a striking image or message that instantly grabs their attention.

Try not to overload it with information. Focus on a slogan or message you want to get across, followed by a bright and memorable design.

5. Reach out to customers with feedback cards

Asking for honest feedback from your paying customers can help you identify areas you could improve or strengths you can focus on in your promotions.

Simply place a feedback card on every table in your coffee shop to give customers a chance to have their say.

Why not offer your customers a free drink or voucher in return for their mailing address, e-mail or mobile number?

That way you can add them to your mailing list to receive special offers and other news about your coffee shop via leaflets, e-newsletters or text messages.

6. Get involved in ‘national’ social media events

There seems to be a digital celebration for anything and everything these days, especially when it comes to coffee appreciation.

Social media users frequently celebrate their love of coffee, with themed events like ‘National Coffee Day’ and ‘National Espresso Day’ occurring every year.

Make a note of when these dates fall and be sure to get involved in the conversation. Post your finest latte art, talk about the ultimate macchiato and start putting your name out there.

7. Host a special event and promote it

Holding an upcoming event at your coffee shop, such as a poetry reading, open mic night or an evening class in cupcake making can help boost your profile.

Advertise community events like this by designing a branded poster with all the relevant information. Then, hand them out to other local businesses to ensure your event is noticed.

Not only will this bring in new customers differently, it helps raise your profile in the local community.

8. Get search engine savvy with your online presence

It should be easy for your customers to find information about you online. Make sure to regularly update your social media and Google profiles with your business’ opening times, contact details and menu options. If your veggie or vegan friendly, let people know – it can be a great way to get customers through the door and talking about your business.

Consider all the questions your customers might have about your business and put that info on your social profiles.

9. Brand your business within your coffee shop

As well as promoting your brand outside the business, it’s important to retain your current customers.

Table talkers are small and cost-effective on-table displays that bear your logo and branding. They can be regularly updated with your current offers, upcoming events and company values.

Place them on your tables for an effective way of displaying your next big promotion.

10. Update your menu with new choices

Regularly updating your menu with new and exciting choices can help ensure customers keep returning to your coffee shop.

Try embellishing these additions by giving your food and drinks imaginative names, to help your business stand out.

Another trick is to place your most expensive coffee drinks near the top of your menu. It’s a simple way to boost your coffee shop’s profits in a single move.