Supporting Local Independents
I knew as soon as I had started talking with Sarah, Festival Coffee’s lovely manageress, that this was exactly the kind of coffee shop I like to work with to produce quality commercial standard photographs. A local business who is keen to keep a social media presence on Facebook and my favourite Instagram. A place which wants to stand out as a professional independent coffee shop in Chester, and who looks to quality local suppliers for all their products!
Most big cities have a plethora of coffee shops and cafes to choose from so where do you even start, especially when half of them are hidden down little side roads and just off the high street. This is where Trip Advisor, online guides, blogs, and books like The Indy Coffee Guide No.4 come into their own. But even then, it may miss some of the newer local gems, and it may take a while to build that amazing reputation of great coffee, atmosphere and service to even get featured!
Well Chester is a smaller city, and has fewer hiding places, but still brings some pleasant surprises. Festival Coffee, a fantastic and friendly coffee shop, while a little hidden is just out the backdoor of Tesco and Boots, or down the alleyway (otherwise known as Queens Street) by Ladbrokes and Burger King off Foregate Street.
Featuring some fantastic windows from the old church building
Creating a consistent brand image
Ever heard the saying Coffee is King? Arisen out of the new coffeeshop couture movement leaving teashops fading into the past, no longer do we just settle for a mug of instant. We want perfectly roasted beans from an ethical source, freshly ground and tamped to perfection just avoiding over extraction, not to mention silky frothed milk, latte art, cappuccino foam with tight bubbles and the perfect sized cup. Not asking for much eh? But how do you convey your love of coffee?
As you can see, Festival Coffee led by Sarah are keen to get all of these elements in place, to serve you a wonderful coffee and to share not only their love of good products such as these beans and teas from Heartland Coffee Roasters of Conwy, North Wales @heartlandcoffi, but also provide a friendly face and a chat if desired as they are people focussed. So it was great to visit this wonderful little business in the heart of my home town and help capture this process!
I just love creating personalised imagery for social media for a consistent brand image and cohesive feed! This is how you stand out in an oversaturated market (I know I’ve said it before but that is because it is true), by consistently posting relevant content that has a cohesive feel as a whole especially on Instagram, but where each piece can stand alone and speak to your target market.
Anyway, enough of me banging my drum about content creation – on to this wonderful coffee shop in the heart of the city, which as it happens is only just around the corner from Pathway Studios where Lizzy Biggs Photography sometimes operates when I need a static studio as opposed to doing location and business photoshoots.
Arrival at Festival Coffee
Before I had even got all the way through the door, the wonderfully friendly and gentle Sarah met me and offered to help me bring my photography equipment upstairs (they have a handy lift especially useful for those with pushchairs, baby paraphernalia, wheel chairs, walking sticks, just heavy shopping bags or me fully equipped with lights, lenses, cameras and tripods for the photoshoot!)
What a wonderful loft conversion Festival Coffee has in an old Church building which has been repurposed as modern church downstairs, and coffee shop and meeting room upstairs. I believe they even hold regular language classes, coffee mornings and even the odd quiz night in their little place of tranquillity, escape and joy.
It was now I made a very interesting discovery – I used to go to school with Sarah in Chester and played in the concert band with her older sister! What a small world. It also goes to show that online messages, emails and DM’s can so easily fall flat of showing your true personality and identity if your web presences never show people who you are – never features your lovely face! I know many people who dislike having their photograph taken, but as a business it can have so many more benefits to outweigh this small initial awkwardness! There is something powerful about having an element of humanity in your pictures, especially the eyes, that help people to feel like they are growing to know you, and as they know you to like and trust you! This is the difference that means I will choose (and surveys suggest it is the same across humanity) to visit or keep returning to your business and use my buying power to support you.
Thank you to Festival Coffee for standing for your beliefs in good products, local connections and treating people well. I just can’t wait to share some more photos and showcase your wonderful selection of Cakes by Simply Bakes, flowers by the local florist Katherine Perkins and more tea and coffee joy!
Don’t miss out
Follow me on Instagram @Lizzybiggsphotography for the heads up when the next part of this blog goes live, regular photo content, and even a few hints & tips to improve your own photography! Cant wait to see you there – pop a comment on the Festival Coffee post to say hi and introduce yourself.
Good bye for now from me – Lizzy – a lover of all things local, ethical, personable and of course coffee and cake!