Tourist Quality vs. Tico Quality

Café Britt has power in many different aspects of the coffee making process. Although they do not house all aspects within the company, there is a strong influence and selection when trying to decide where they will get their coffee and how they will distribute it to the world. Café Britt takes pride in being able to choose the best quality product to maximize profit and remain reliable for their customers. This power allows them to control as much as they can and have flexibility with what they sell, the price, and know the quality meets their standard.

Café Britt is known for their roasting. They source their beans from small plantations around the country they are stationed (if they are selling in Costa Rica, the beans come from Costa Rican plantations, if they are selling in Peru, they use Peruvian beans, etc.). The plantations they chose are small so there is a higher quality from each plantation because the crops gain more attention. This is different from Doka because Doka has a larger amount of plantations run my the same company, but they can produce more beans, even if it is at a lower quality. This high quality bean is chosen by Café Britt and then sent to their roasting plants to be roasted according to the different options. Café Britt is known for having different blends as well as having beans that are packaged according to the origin of the beans. These packages are made to stand out and Café Britt led a movement to transform coffee from being a commodity to a luxury by changing the packaging to be more eye catching and stand up right rather than laying down. Café Britt markets based on their quality; they ensure their customers will receive the highest quality roasts based on flavor, aroma, sugars, acidity, and other similar features. This is also how they measure their success. They look at their revenues and what divisions have the most profit and always look at modern industries to try and exploit all possible ways to sell their products or create/ manipulate new products to target a different market (coffee retail vs travel retail vs food etc.).

In addition to having high quality coffee, Café Britt also thrives off the tourism in different countries by expanding and marketing toward travel retail to gain clients from airports. They know tourists coming to Latin American countries will be more willing to buy higher quality coffee for a higher price in comparison to Ticos who are content with “lower” quality coffee that is prices more reasonably for them. Those who take tours at Café Britt have the ability to sample coffee throughout the tours and it ends with the option to buy the coffee as well as look at other items. These items include souvenirs  that are designed for each country specifically by a team that is immersed into the culture for two weeks and creates products that uniquely describes that country in that period of time. This department adds to the sales Café Britt has and brings in a separate revenue. For the coffee, there is also a 6 million dollar industry online and over the phone that started in 1996. The airports and travel retailers provide 250 million dollars of revenue. These high amounts show that the company is doing well and by continuing to modernize, can continue to expand and meet whatever demand is necessary. When it comes to selling, Café Britt does not fall short.

Going into more specific aspects of marketing, Café Britt has thought through each step very strategically. Starting with their name was chosen due to its simplicity and it is easy to remember and understand in any language. Their tours they give at the roasting facilities, the actors make the process entertaining and easily catch the attention of the tourists. The actors make learning about the coffee process entertaining and memorable for the future. From there, the tour includes a lot of free samples of different coffee roasts so the customers know what they are expecting and can experiment with different flavors they may like. The store has all the coffee that was sampled on top of other products and more samples so it is hard to resist looking at their products. Even the repetition of the words “high quality” make the consumer think that it is the best and they should buy it.

Café Britt also utilizes a lot of aspects of social media to create bonds with customers by showing lots of pictures of the plantations, describing the process, and making their company transparent without any hidden steps. This allows customers to trust the product and company, which is a strong marketing strategy because when customers feel they can trust someone, they will provide repeat business. The design of the stores also draw people in because each store is unique to that specific country following the same process as the designing of souvenirs.

All of these thoughts and processes influence the success of Café Britt, but there are still some aspects that are not always what they seem and I do not agree with. To begin, the company talks a lot about sustainability and how their smaller plantations are 100% organic since they use other plants and vegetation to help the coffee plants grow. This is not correct, there are still some pesticides that need to be used and it is not fair for the company to glance over that gray area when they say they are giving full disclosure. In addition, I did not agree with the focus of the company. Although many of the workers say they produce the way they do because of quality, due to the comedy and the way the presentation were given, I felt as though their tactics were geared with revenue and profit in mind knowing higher quality will sell better. I felt the presentations were too well rehearsed making the tour more cheesy.  Although it was entertaining, I would try and have their presentation appear more genuine rather than a rehearsed act since it was even said they were actors.

In contrast, Doka Estate’s presentation appeared more genuine since they presented facts that were backed up with documents, the actual machinery, and even knowing the bosses did not speak English well shows they focus more on production and harvest rather than selling their product on tours. Although I might be wrong with my understanding, this is how I depict the two companies in comparison to one another. In reality, my opinion might be different if we only saw one plantation.

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