Australia’s oldest coffee roasters – Griffiths Bros – have got through the pandemic with the help of a new brand developed with Melbourne advertising agency, The Reactor.
Says Angus Smallwood, head of strategy, The Reactor: “A pandemic really is the perfect storm for coffee roasters. Most coffee drinkers would have no idea who roasts the coffee they drink – they rely on their barista to decide that for them. But with cafes closed and people making their own coffee at home, suddenly roasters who only market to wholesale B2B clients need to sell direct to the consumer through social media advertising.”
From what Peter Patisteas, the managing director of Griffiths Bros. says, they knew they needed something special: “We knew we had to advertise direct to the consumer, but every time I looked at my Facebook feed, I saw another new roaster I’d never heard of offering discounts and free delivery on a bag of brown beans with a pretty font on the front. Our cafe clients know we roast some of the most delicious coffees in Australia, but you can’t taste Facebook posts. If we just showed packaging and product, we’d have no option but to get into a discounting war because it looks like we’re selling exactly the same thing as everyone else.”
Instead of relying on tactical product and price ads with a bit of design thrown in, the Griffiths Bros. team worked with The Reactor to build a brand that speaks to its point of difference – its quality and experience.
As The Reactor’s creative director, Nick Brown puts it: “Griffiths Bros. have been roasting coffee in Melbourne for 140 years. They’ve seen Melbourne go through a lot of ups and downs in that time – they were even here during the last pandemic! You don’t survive for that long unless you’re good at what you do – so we thought that was the best way to show consumers how good their coffee is – by showing that for the last 140 years they’ve been here giving people their coffee fix to help them get through the tough times – big and small.”
Results have been strong for the brand from the start says group marketing manager Courtney Sims: “Our online sales have been a real lifeline for the business; growing steadily with plenty of new customers coming to us for the first time. On top of this, we’ve also started receiving enquires from new cafe clients as Melbourne starts to open up again.”
Says Patisteas: “In a lot of ways, this pandemic has been really hard on our business. Most of our cafe clients have done it tough during lockdown. Not all of them are going to survive. But we’ve also seen how investing in doing our brand properly has helped give us a clear point of difference in the market that has helped us ride out a very challenging time.”
Initial creative for the brand has already gone live across web, social and packaging, with more to follow as restrictions ease into the new year.
Client: Griffiths Bros.
Agency: The Reactor
Digital: The Reactor Group – Straight Out Digital
Marketing Manager: Courtney Sims
Head of Strategy: Angus Smallwood
Creative Director: Nick Brown
Head of Digital: Simon Blangiardo
Copy Writer: Angus Smallwood
Graphic Designer: Sophie Jeffries
Graphic Designer: Marley Edwards