I recently was hired by a two companies to order and oversee their coffee service for two large trade shows. Such a task would bore most people, but not me. I was happy to do it because I have a new decaf theory I wanted to try out.
Customers always feel the need to order coffee, hot water and decaf. To be honest, decaf isn’t needed. I try telling them this, but they insist. It was lucky for me this time that the customers did not insist. I explained that I would buy decaf Starbucks packets and offer it along with the tea bags. This way the overpriced hot water has two purposes instead of just one. Both customers said this was fine, especially with a cost savings of $60 to $80++ per gallon of a beverage that’s wasted about 98 percent of the time.
The results? Exactly as I thought. My exhibitors saw a total attendance of more 2,500 people at their trade shows; only one person asked specifically for decaf coffee.
My recommendation: Before any contracts are signed, ask properties to use decaf packets so you, too, can make your hot water do double duty. This will let you put banqueting dollars elsewhere. Remember, the key to this is to make sure it is a good quality decaf and to ask up front.
This is my story for now, and I’m sticking to it.