For consumers who’ve grown tired of the long lines, complicated menus and pretentious baristas associated with modern cafés, a new kind of coffee shop experience has arrived: the NESCAFÉ Coffee Taproom. Open on Toronto’s trendy Queen Street through July 12, the pop-up encourages millennial coffee drinkers to test the brand’s “at-home” Sweet & Creamy product in a coffee shop setting—without all the hassles.
To enter the Taproom, consumers encounter a speakeasy-style engagement in which the “key” to get in is a Sweet & Creamy sachet. After scanning the sachet on an iPad, the patron receives a secret code to unlock the doors of the café. Inside, free Wi-Fi, charging outlets, background music and plenty of comfy seating await. And the kicker—using their own Sweet & Creamy sachets and one of 12 on-site hot water taps, consumers brew their own cups of coffee on demand. For patrons amused by coffee cups bearing butchered names, there are 50 custom cup styles featuring misspelled versions of common names to choose from. Those looking to share the experience socially are encouraged to use #nescafeca and #taproom.
The Taproom experience serves as an evolution of last year’s Sweet & Creamy sampling program, which celebrated the relaunch of the product. Additional elements in this year’s campaign include a microsite, digital and social media content developed in partnership with Toronto-based influencers, online videos supported by a paid digital media buy and a Snapchat geofilter, only available on-site at the Taproom.
“These are real coffee newbies,” says Deana Zaghloul, senior marketing manager at NESCAFÉ. “They haven’t figured out what coffee they want to drink; they’re not really into the habit yet. And this was about creating an easy, simple experience versus their normal coffee shop, where there are really complicated menus and it can be a very daunting experience. This was about tapping into how simple it can be to get a great, consistent cup of coffee.”
Agencies: WorkInProgress, Boulder, CO; Mosaic, Toronto.