A community is a place of choice, a space that attracts people with common interests and values to create a sense of belonging. Successful businesses define interests and values through their public image as it determines the quantity and quality of prospective customers. A Brisbane-based chain of espresso bars has adjusted their image to take the business to another level -Here is their story;

http://www.mustdobrisbane.com/

image courtesy of http://www.mustdobrisbane.com/

When a band of brothers with a strong vision embarked on a journey to “gain control of their own destiny”, they joined the ranks of budding entrepreneurs. Armed with the motto “Brothers by birth, espresso by choice” several members of the Gowty family set out on a mission to supply urban caffeine aficionados with their daily fix. Converting the heritage-listed building of a former plumbing business into a coffee shop, they created an urban retreat of smooth coffee flavours, Italian coffee machines and free Wi-Fi facilities. According to the Brothers, it was their “common sense approach to coffee and simple affordable food offering” that provided the critical edge for their success. The classic breakfast menu listed the usual suspects of comforting morning snacks ranging from sourdough sandwiches and Bircher muesli to a hearty brekkie burger.

Word of mouth and exposure in stylish magazines helped to boost brand awareness and customer numbers. Within a couple of years, the place became a magnet for the community of the young and trendy inner-city dwellers- commonly known as hipsters. Patrons praised the cosy atmosphere and the fast and friendly service. What sounds like a prime example of entrepreneurial vision presented its own limitations, however. A “too cool for school” attitude started affecting the service and was reported in online reviews and social media postings. While the offerings and the buzz of the place was still great, the sense of belonging was in danger. Walk-in customers who were not up to the standard of the “high priests” of coffee making did not feel appreciated in this environment.

New owner Miles Gillham, who still works closely with the founding brothers, felt it was time to improve the customer experience. “We want our products to be enjoyed by everyday people, by families who appreciate our products and our great service,” Mr Gillham said. Brother Coffee shops still employ bearded baristas with tattoos and Tumblr accounts, but now caters for a wider audience. Meanwhile, with six coffee outlets dotted across the Brisbane area and a roasting facility in hip and happening Fortitude Valley, the small gourmet coffee chain is set for further growth.Good customer service starts with an inclusive attitude and EFTPOS payment provider Tyro is part of the solution. Together with point of sale software provider Kounta, they help companies to grow by providing the payment technology that makes doing business fast and simple. With a strong focus on the customer experience, Mr Gillham knows about the importance of easy payment options.

“Our customers often don’t carry cash, they like the simplicity of being able to pay with cards so we don’t charge them extra. This is just a part of our service.” He says.

This is a guest post by Manuel Mitternacht representing Tyro Payments.