How custom coffee packaging & Instagram can boost sales

Esther Gibbs
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January 30, 2024
custom coffee packaging, custom coffee bags, custom printed coffee packaging, custom printed coffee bags, Neighbourhood Coffee

With over two billion active users, Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world. Statistics show the average Instagram user spends 12 hours per month scrolling through the app. Beyond this, half a billion users watch Instagram Stories daily, which are often laced with advertisements. 

Clearly, sharing images of custom coffee packaging on Instagram can significantly boost brand recognition. A crucial part of any business model is to analyse which advertising channels reach your customers, and how to integrate your product into their daily routines. 

As Instagram is a daily habit for over half a billion users, a strong online presence can introduce your coffee to a wider range of new customers. To learn more about leveraging custom coffee packaging on social media platforms, I spoke with Hayley Forrester, the social media and brand manager at Neighbourhood Coffee, UK. 

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The importance of creating relatable online content

Visuals are a key part of marketing and content creation. Including high-quality images of custom coffee bags in your marketing strategy can help increase follower count, engagement ratings, likes, and partnership opportunities on digital platforms. 

Notably, ecommerce data suggests product pages with high-quality photographs can help increase conversion rates by up to 30%.

Neighbourhood Coffee, based in Liverpool, UK, has built a strong Instagram following, recently hitting 10,000 organic followers. Hayley has worked for the brand for the past two years, and has a Master’s Degree in Digital Marketing. She says as a social platform, Instagram is constantly evolving and growing. “Things are always changing in social media, so to make it work, you have to be ready to keep learning,” she adds. 

Neighbourhood Coffee’s Instagram page is packed with engaging videos that provide tips on brewing coffee, updates on the brand’s events, special deals, and new releases. The brand creates content that relates to popular trends to align with the platform’s algorithm. 

Hayley explains social media is an aspect of business that requires planning, creativity, and flexibility. “While I do have a rough plan, I’m always ready to go with the flow,” she says. “To be honest, that’s where my best content comes from. I could spend days planning and creating content only for it to flop when I’ve posted it. But then an off-the-cuff idea will go viral!” 

Hayley recommends creating a bank of ideas to turn to when you are struggling to find inspiration for online content. For instance, having custom coffee packaging subliminally positioned within photographs can help build brand association and recognition. 

custom coffee packaging, custom coffee bags, custom printed coffee packaging, custom printed coffee bags, Neighbourhood Coffee

Using custom coffee packaging to build brand recognition online

Understanding your business’ personality and brand values – and how to relay them online – is necessary for building a strong social media presence. Neighbourhood Coffee has been extremely successful in highlighting and showcasing its brand values: which is to make coffee fun, inclusive, accessible. 

This is also reflected in the brand’s custom coffee packaging. Neighbourhood Coffee twists the names of each coffee offering into a clever pun, which stands out against the bright colour of the bag’s label. 

“Coffee is one of those little luxuries in life. It’s there to be enjoyed,” Hayley says. “So, I think it’s only right our online content is enjoyable, too. At Neighbourhood Coffee, we don’t take ourselves too seriously, which I think comes across in our social content.” 

“Specialty coffee can be seen as a bit snobby or pretentious, so we try to keep things light and accessible while still being dedicated to the quality of our product and the producers we work with,” she adds. “ Here at Neighbourhood, we don’t just want to be seen as experts in coffee – we want to be seen as experts in the enjoyment of coffee.” 

The goal of good marketing is to provide value for your customers. This can be through communicating how you can solve their problems, or giving them. Marketing should have a clear purpose that benefits the customer. 

Hayley says her priority on social media is to brighten someone’s day. “That’s far more important to us than trying to sell coffee. If I can interrupt the doom scrolling for just 90 seconds and spread a bit of joy, that’s a job well done,” she says. 

“There is so much educational content about coffee already available, so I try to add value to our customers by delivering the information in a fun way.” 

custom coffee packaging, custom coffee bags, custom printed coffee packaging, custom printed coffee bags, Neighbourhood Coffee

Beyond custom coffee packaging: What else to consider when creating social media content 

One way Hayley ensures Neighbourhoods stays on trend is by creating ‘how-to’ content. For instance, videos will show Hayley learning or experimenting with coffee. As she has never worked as a barista, she believes the content makes Neighbourhoods more relatable to home baristas. 

‘I’m trying to make specialty coffee accessible and show people that you don’t have to be a super skilled barista to enjoy coffee at home,” Hayley explains. “So, for those in our audience who are new to specialty coffee, hopefully they’ll think they can give it a go, while the more experienced home baristas probably just get a kick out of me spilling everything all the time.”  

For Neighbourhood Coffee, social media has been great for brand awareness. “It’s amazing how things travel fast on social media,” Hayley says. “When Eurovision was in Liverpool, we did a limited edition ‘Brew-o–vision’ collection and created content around it. It spread like wildfire – to the point where we had ABBA fans from all over the world wanting to buy our coffee.”

However, she says the biggest impact is how it has built the Neighbourhood Coffee community. By sharing information about its wholesale customers, Neighbourhood has created a strong brand loyalty. “It’s turned the staff of the venues we supply into advocates for our business,” Hayley says. “Which I think can be quite difficult to do, especially if they’re not particularly coffee-led or have higher staff turnover.” 

To improve your own social media, Hayley says it’s important to be clear on what’s important to your customer base. “Figure out what makes your brand unique and use that as your ‘true north’.” 

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 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.

Images courtesy of Neighbourhood Coffee.

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

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