Brand Study: 7-Eleven launches new premium African coffee

McDonald’s McCafé and Starbucks thrust premium coffee into the mainstream with their ubiquitous footprints. 7-Eleven’s dive into premium coffee has big implications as well, specifically in making the product even more accessible by offering it at the same price as the c-store chain’s other hot beverages.

7-Eleven – which has nearly 11,000 U.S. locations – is touting its new coffee’s sourcing, subtly educating consumers that this isn’t their grandparents' cup of joe.

The brand is wise to focus on its source as a differentiator, as it shows the company is forward thinking and mindful of sustainable practices, as well as its relationship with small coffee farmers.

As 7-Eleven’s senior category manager Shawn Barnes explained in the release, “We know our customers care about coffee crops that are responsibly grown and sourced directly from small farms.”

The premium rollout is a big win for consumers, who are increasingly seeking “gourmet” coffee — a record-high 59% of consumers, compared to 46% in 2012, according to the National Coffee Association.

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