Concentration of choice

Modern life gives us an array of opportunities to go somewhere, physically or digitally, and have presented to us a huge range of choice in any category of interest we may have.

There is a paradox here.

Concentration of anything, attracts those who may be interested in purchasing to the location, whilst creating the hurdle for those hoping to make a sale of  differentiating their offer from everyone else in the concentration.

This morning I was waiting for a meeting in a café in a local shopping strip that is little more than a concentration of cafes, bistros, and dining of all sorts. I was struck by the breadth of choice, and the resulting challenge of differentiation for the operators.

The café I was in is one of about 7 or 8 within 150 meters, all selling good coffee, a range of simple, tasty menu items, but all pretty much the same to a casual visitor. I wonder what would happen if one of them started roasting their own coffee, creating that  intoxicating smell, and the opportunity to tell a story about the beans, why the tastes varied, where they came from, and how the skills of the barista influenced the outcome. They may also make a bit of extra margin.

The provision of a cup of coffee is pretty commoditised, buying roasted beans from one of the roaster/distributors is a transaction where the individual café has little leverage in the price negotiation, but there appears to be plenty of margin in the roasting business.  Seems pretty obvious to me.

About strategyaudit

StrategyAudit is a boutique strategy and marketing consultancy concentrating on the challenges of the medium sized manufacturing businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The particular focus is on their strategic and marketing development. as well as the business and operational efficiency improvements necessary for day to day commercial survival. We not only give advice, we go down "into the weeds" to ensure and enable implementation.
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