How the font on custom coffee bags portrays your brand

Janice Kanniah
May 24, 2024
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What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a brand? Is it a logo? A colour palette? A catchy jingle? For many, the most distinctive aspect of a brand is its chosen font or typography. This refers to the style and formatting of the printed words across custom coffee bags, shop fronts, leaflets, business cards, and websites.

An eye-catching font is essential for communicating information and representing a brand’s overall tone. Notably, studies show that fonts can also influence consumers’ perceptions of product value. 

An effective font can create a memorable and appealing product when designing custom coffee bags. So, how can brands ensure they get it right? 

To gain better insight into the importance of fonts on custom coffee bags, I spoke to George Spithakis from Crop Coffee Roastery and Benjamin Westley of Boketto Cold Brew

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Why does font matter on custom coffee bags?

Recent research shows that consumers primarily rely on the visual design of food packaging when making a buying decision and forming expectations about product quality. Notably, further studies have shown that visual design is especially important when making quick buying decisions. 

Based in Los Angeles, California, Boketto Cold Brew sources its coffee from local coffee roasters and delivers fresh cold brew teas and coffees to homes, offices, events, and restaurants.

When speaking about custom coffee bags, Benjamin explains that the font “you choose is the only chance you have to set the tone of your brand.

“It says everything about you,” he continues. “It’s very important to choose a font that clearly relays where your coffee stands as a brand. For instance, are you a premium priced brand? If so, your font should speak specifically to that.” 

George is the roast master and department director for Crop Coffee Roastery in Heraklion, Crete. He adds that the choice of font can provide customers with vital cues on the nature of the coffee inside the packaging. 

“Font design is of major importance for me,” he says. “It must correlate to the philosophy you serve and suit the needs of your product. For example, an Ethiopian coffee with a refreshing aftertaste and lively acidity needs to be approached with similar colours and fonts. With that kind of packaging, you prepare the consumer for specific expectations. It’s the first step of showing the flavours that are promised [in the bag].” 

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Choosing the right font for your branded coffee packaging

Essentially, coffee packaging should be so effective that customers see it not just as product protection but also as a marketing tool. Therefore, your custom coffee bags should balance protective properties with aesthetics. 

Benjamin explains that font size can occasionally limit the type of packaging frequently favoured for selling coffee. 

“Flexible coffee pouches impact our font design and choice as they’re limited in size and material thickness,” he says. “Most coffee is sold in smaller 12-ounce bags. So, you want to choose a font that [is legible on small and large bags] to accommodate other products or promotional goods.”

Another consideration is whether the font matches the brand personality in terms of finish and colour. Studies reveal that different finishes and colour palettes can evoke feelings of comfort, nostalgia, or excitement. Beyond this, the font will need to be consistent across all other packaging formats and marketing materials. 

An important thing to remember is that the font should be legible when seen on shelves, from a distance, as well as when held in a customer’s hand. Additionally, using one or two similar fonts can create a visual hierarchy of information. 

Brands that use more than two fonts run the risk of disrupting the visual balance between the typography and other design elements. The aim of custom coffee bags is to create a harmonious effect that doesn’t draw too much focus on one element over another. 

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Planning fonts for custom coffee bags

A significant factor to consider before locking down a font would be your customer. Brands that are just starting out are advised to create a buyer persona. This refers to an in-depth description of your ideal customer. It extends beyond gender and age to include more detailed information such as interests, hobbies, and motivations. 

Once a brand has a better understanding of its target market, it can design custom coffee bags that appeal directly to it. 

“The factor that impacted my font selection the most was a missing aesthetic in the coffee world at the time I started the company,” Benjamin explains. “I noticed a lot of designs using wood grains and darker tones and realised there was a gap in the market for a clean, upscale, brighter presentation.” 

Boketto Cold Brew, in Los Angeles, California, uses flexible pouches for its cold brew coffee offerings. In a recent interview with Cold Brew Pak, Benjamin said that after noticing that few brands offered cold brew coffee in bulk, he calculated that 1.5 litres would be roughly a week’s supply for the typical single customer. This allows him to offer subscriptions that consist of four cold brew pouches a month, with top-ups available. 

“You need to ask yourself questions, such as ‘which consumer am I addressing, what emotions am I trying to engage, and what is the quality category of the coffee,” George says. 

Benjamin suggests that coffee roasters look at their favourite non-coffee brands. “What does the logo and colour palette say to you? Look at other roaster’s packaging and do the opposite. You want your custom coffee bags to pop next to everyone else’s.” 

At MTPak Coffee, we recognise the importance of designing 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. 

We offer a choice of 100% compostable or recyclable packaging options such as kraft paper or rice paper. Additional choices include PLA and LDPE coffee bags. All of our packaging options are fully customised using sustainable materials.

Header image courtesy of Boketto Cold Brew

Create your custom coffee bags today! Reach out to our team

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Janice Kanniah
Janice Kanniah

Janice is freelance writer based in South Africa and has written for MTPak Coffee since 2020. Her interests are in writing about sustainability, the circular economy, and the future of the environment.

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