How should roasters engage with viral coffee trends?

Amelia Cooper
July 24, 2023
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Every so often, a piece of content goes viral. A video, image, or article resonates with thousands, if not millions, of people, compelling them to share it across social media. Providing it shines a positive light on their brand, viral coffee trends can be a dream come true for many specialty coffee roasters.  

Viral trends can ensure widespread exposure for a brand and products. Beyond this, they act as free marketing, saving a roaster huge fees in advertising and media costs. This type of content engagement can help improve customer loyalty, encourage sales, and increase brand awareness. According to Forbes, companies that create and engage with video content may experience a 41% increase in traffic through web searches.

So how should coffee roasters engage with viral coffee trends to maximise their profits?

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What makes online content go viral?

While the idea of widespread content sharing has existed for centuries, the concept of something “going viral” has only become popular since the emergence of the internet. Any piece of social media content, including text-based posts, images, or videos, has the potential to “go viral”. 

“Going viral” simply means the content gains a rapidly increasing audience and often spreads to different social media platforms. A high level of engagement among viewers fuels this “viral” status. As more users view, like, share, or comment on the content, the social media platforms algorithm ensures it is presented on other viewers’ pages. 

Notably, viral content is notoriously unpredictable. “Making content go viral can be difficult,” Paul Adams, the founder and CEO of UK marketing agency Tambo, previously told MTPak Coffee. “Viral content is typically something that happens freely and organically and becomes part of popular consciousness. It’s usually something that burns brightly and dies quickly.”

While marketers and brands around the world strive to create viral content, very few actually achieve it. However, specialty coffee roasters can increase the chances of generating a buzz around their products if they think outside the box. 

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What kind of coffee trends go viral?

At the start of 2020, Dalgona Coffee experienced monumental social media hype, almost overnight. The homemade beverage is made by whisking together instant coffee, sugar, and hot water. It is then spooned over milk. The drink’s unique frothy appearance and simple recipe made it popular on platforms such as Instagram and TikTok.

Beyond this, in April 2020, Google revealed searches for “Dalgona Coffee” had increased by 3,000 times the usual number of weekly searches. In just 30 days, it had become the most-searched type of coffee in the world – overtaking ‘the previously undefeated champion’, espresso.

Previous examples of online coffee trends include:

  • Latte art, as well as tips on how to create easy designs. 
  • Unusual latte flavours such as matcha, chai, charcoal, turmeric, and lavender. 
  • Iced coffee recipes 
  • Coffee recipes that use tapioca or boba pearls to create a coffee version of bubble tea
  • Preparing nitro cold brew coffee
  • Using a Chemex to brew coffee 
  • Chocolate espresso, where creators pour espresso over different chocolates to create an “easy mocha”. 

Additional content also includes recreation videos. This is where content creators share their recipes to recreate popular coffee chain drinks, such as a frappe from Starbucks. 

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How can coffee roasters get involved with viral coffee trends?

Viral content is driven by a variety of factors. For instance, it will often resonate with current trends or events. Alternatively, it is highly unique and successfully stands out from other content. However, a roaster’s post could also go viral simply thanks to its authenticity or emotional appeal. 

For those who are new to the world of social media marketing, authenticity is one of the best ways to increase your audience. Creating content that is authentic to the company’s values and personality will help strike a chord with the audience. Notably, a recent report revealed 88% of consumers name authenticity as a key factor when deciding whether to support a brand.

It is important for roasters to research current coffee trends and use them for inspiration. Then, they can put their own unique spin on the content. Viral content works best when brands parallel the key themes of the trends and then make a few personal adaptations. 

For instance, roasters wanting to engage with videos that feature unusual latte flavours will need to put their own “stamp” on the content. This could be by featuring the cafe in the background, showing the barista’s face, and ensuring the brand’s logo is viable in the video. Additionally, remind customers they can try the drinks in person and encourage them to visit the establishment. 

In short, there’s no end to effective, impactful social media trends for coffee brands to engage with. It is important for coffee roasters and cafes to find trends that resonate with their brands and link closely to the product range. 

Additionally, roasters can use video content to educate consumers about environmentally-friendly practices, such as sustainable coffee packaging and how to dispose of it correctly.

Essentially, it is best that roasters tie their content into a particular niche so they can attract the audience they want. At MTPak Coffee, we recognise that packaging also plays a huge role in the marketing of your product. It’s important to design packaging that not only protects your coffee but also reflects your brand identity and stands out on the shelf.

Our range of coffee packaging is 100% recyclable and made from renewable resources such as kraft paper and rice paper. Our line of coffee bags contains recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable options to boost your eco-friendly credentials.

Our team of expert designers can help you create the perfect packaging for your coffee with sustainable materials, water-based inks, and recyclable components. It means that if your brand does go viral, it will be represented in the best way possible, both online and on the shelves.

Furthermore, our Education Centre is full of information on marketing, packaging and roasting trends that can help roasters set their business apart.

For more information on custom-printed coffee packaging, contact our team.

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