01/09/2017

97% of tea drinkers think you’re a rule breaker…

Our Mission is to Make Tea Awesome. That means making it better. By this we mean saying goodbye to dusty tea bags served in not-quite-boiling water from the coffee machine.

97% OF TEA DRINKERS THINK YOU'RE A RULE BREAKER…

If you read the Trade Times two weeks ago you would know that tea drinkers would be happy to pay the same prices for tea as coffee - a whopping 87% of them. Which presents a huge opportunity for anywhere serving cups of tea.

Of course we made the assumption that the tea was “awesome”.

So this week we defined “awesome” and asked if our drinkers thought that the places where they buy a cup of tea where up to scratch.

HOW TO MAKE AN AWESOME TEA

How To Make Tea Awesome

We all know the feeling - why spend £1.50 when you can buy that paper tea bag in Waitrose for 2p? When you’re out and about you expect folks to put some effort in, here’s what we look for:

* No dusty, cheapo paper tea bags;

* Always proper rolled, whole leaves;

* The right ratio of tea to water**;

* Water at the perfect temperature;

* Brewed for just the right amount of time.

** as a side here: small, medium and large tea basically translates as “strong, weak, or coloured water?” - and there’s nothing quite like an additional 30p for some extra water, hey?

There are many other nice to haves, but these are the basics you need to get right every time.

ANOTHER INSANELY ONE-SIDED RESPONSE

97% of our drinkers reckon the places they go to buy tea simply don’t do it right - we’re not surprised, and we reckon you’re not either.

Kudos to those venues keeping our 3% happy though - we’ve asked who they are so we’ll let you know if it’s you.

WHY DOES IT MATTER?

Easy one - if your tea serve doesn’t add value you can’t capitalise on the tea opportunity. You can’t charge coffee level prices and you can’t expect your drinkers to return time and again for the perfect brew that you offer.

1,000 cups a week at 30p more per cup? That’s £15,600 additional revenue per year - not to mention the reputation gains you’ll make which means the 1,000 probably increases as well.

THE GOOD NEWS? YOU'RE ALREADY DOING IT!

Sadly not with tea.

Given the similarities in customer behaviour and occasion we always like to compare how you deliver your tea to how you deliver your coffee.

It provides the perfect reference when it comes to elevating the tea offer and taking advantage of the opportunity that is present. The effort that operators go to in sourcing beans, preparing the story and the marketing and ultimately the care and attention that goes into the preparation of each Latte or Flat White means they charge higher prices and generate more drinker goodwill.

You can replicate this approach with tea.

But it doesn’t stop there. Consider donuts. On the one hand you’ve got the 6 for £1 in Tesco and on the other you’ve got £3.50 for a Peanut Butter donut from Crosstown.

Each has an occasion but of course the perception of care and attention in the ingredient sourcing and preparation of a Crosstown makes it easier for us to a pay 10 times as much for it.

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If you want to take tea seriously and follow the rules, you need to invest in your team and your delivery. Like you do with baristas, chefs and bar staff.

“TRAINING? FOR TEA? IT'S EASY ISN'T IT?”

That’s what some folks say when we offer to come and teach them about brewing tea. To be fair we may just be dealing with the 3% who drinkers already think are making it really well - but that’s pretty unlikely. Interestingly the same venues wouldn’t let you near a coffee machine without being a fully accredited barista!

This attitude to tea is certainly holding operators back from capitalising on the tea opportunity and we’re trying to change it.

Earlier this year we moved Emma at Tea HQ into full time training, developing courses, running events and training sessions and visiting stockists. Later in the year we will be opening our tea lab {the working title!} at Tea HQ - where you can come and visit, learn about blending and producing awesome tea. We’ll talk more about this in a few weeks.

Chat to Emma about doing things properly

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