Time for me to bring you another Spotter’s guide. As usual, I wasn’t expecting to find inspiration when I bought this item. I didn’t realise I needed this product until I found it. And, now I think about it, I realise that most of my other Spotter’s Guides have that in common.

Perhaps when the marketing is this good, I can’t help myself but make a purchase? I guess that’s the point.

Anyway, I digress.

You’ve probably noticed that takeaway cups are getting a bad press of late. (If you haven’t, catch yourself on!)

The images of rubbish mountains in China and plastic islands floating about in the Caribbean have fuelled a desire to reduce the rubbish that we are creating in the Evan-Cook household. So, I’ve been on a mission to take a reuseable coffee cup whenever I buy a takeaway coffee.

I tend to favour a ‘flat white’ as my coffee of choice. That’s a short coffee, so the standard reuseable cup is too big to contain it properly.

I took to Google to find a solution. The wonder that is the internet quickly came up with the perfect item. Introducing <tra-la-la> the KeepCup  (www.keepcup.com). Not only did this beautiful website house the answer to my problem, it also turned out to be a veritable treasure trove of cool marketing, so I decided to share it with you.

I had literally never heard of this company before, but as soon as I landed on their site, I felt at home and I instantly felt as though I wanted to be a customer.

How did they make this happen, you ask?

They used key messages.

I know! This marketing stuff really works!

Just by looking at this web site, I can see that the team at KeepCup have thoroughly researched the Dream Customer for the business. When my actual KeepCup arrived in the post, it was once again obvious from the packaging that they were using a set of Key Messages to appeal to their ideal audience. Doing this challenging work upfront is enabling KeepCup to find its market, engage with it, and convert interested people (prospects) into buying customers, and evangelists. QED: I’m writing this blog.

Simply by reading the content on the KeepCup site, I can ascertain that they have identified the following key details about their Dream Customer:

KeepCup users:

  • Are environmentally astute.

This one is kind of obvious. But, to engage with their audience, KeepCup has created a campaign called #reuserrevolution. The environmental reasons for using KeepCup are clearly outlined on the packaging and the hashtag campaign is promoted there too. As a purchaser, I now know that if I want to share my recent purchase I can join in with that hashtag online.

KeepCup packaging


  • Are fastidious or even obsessive about the quality of coffee that they are drinking.

References are made on the packaging and website to ‘drinking pleasure’, ‘specialty coffee’, and ‘barista standard’ sizing. These sorts of things are only important to very particular coffee drinkers.

KeepCup packaging


  • Will travel to a particular coffee shop if it provides the best coffee, and offers a discount for using a reuseable cup.

The Twitter and Facebook pages include content where the audience is encouraged to share their favourite coffee spots, and cafes who offer a discount for bringing your own cup are promoted.

As KeepCup know this, they are clearly engaged in a strategy of building relationships with coffee shop owners, so that they can encourage them to buy wholesale, branded KeepCups which they can then sell on to their own customers. Clever.


  • Believe that they are an individual, or within their own circles, a trend setter.

There are multiple options for personalising your own cup…..mine is coral and green, and I’m VERY happy with that.


  • Are active people who enjoy getting out and about and love being out in nature.

The KeepCup Facebook and Twitter accounts include shots of coffee cups situated at a beautiful beach, an unspoilt forest, etc. It’s aspirational stuff. Here’s an example.

If you have been following along with my recent posts about the different elements of the Key Message Outline that I use for my clients, you’ll know all about what a Value Proposition is. I think the Value Proposition for KeepCup is their ‘Pure drinking pleasure on the go’ phrase, shown on the packaging. It’s a shame that this isn’t the first thing you see on their website. But, we can’t all be perfect!

There is so much more detail that I’d love to geek out over, in terms of this businesses marketing plan, but I’m running out of space. If you’d care to discuss, let’s get together for coffee. I’ll bring the cups.

KeepCup packaging

If you enjoyed this Spotter’s Guide, you can check out some others here and here.