When you are starting a small business, creating a unique brand identity is one of the most important steps for success. However, this can be pretty challenging if you are based in a competitive industry.

According to Forbes, brand storytelling is 22 times more memorable than just listing facts about your brand. Why? Because it helps your audience a personal connection with what your brand is trying to achieve. If you can make customers feel a part of this mission, this gives your brand a powerful value proposition. So, you need to decide what it is you want to be remembered for!

For Steve Fambo, founder of the start-up Purematcha Tea, offering a stellar customer experience was the key to standing out from the crowd. Steve tells us about his efforts to create both sustainable and high-quality matcha, and how his minimalist custom tissue paper design created a major point of difference for the brand.

(In Steve’s own words):

“I started Purematcha together with my wife Stephanie. I’ve worked in the digital online delivery space since early 2000 and my wife comes from a Visual Arts teaching background.”

“Our matcha story started in December 2013 during our honeymoon in Kyoto Japan. My wife curiously ordered a vibrant green matcha latte from a cafe in Kyoto and she was immediately drawn by the matcha's full-bodied green tea flavour. I had a taste myself, finished the flat white that I’d ordered and went right back into the cafe and ordered another matcha tea for myself.”

“For a good part of that day, we spoke about how great a green tea latte would sell back home in Australia. At that time, we knew little about the rich history and importance of matcha tea in Japanese culture, let alone the secret health benefits that matcha tea has been providing to the Japanese people for centuries.”

“We drew comparisons with Australia’s love for coffee, in particular, the home barista scene where there is a huge demand for freshly roasted beans as opposed to supermarket long shelf life coffee. Furthermore, the demand for high-quality brewing accessories to take the coffee at home experience to a whole new level. Similarly, we don’t just offer fresh high-quality matcha. We offer the entire ensemble of handmade matcha brewing accessories, such as beautifully crafted matcha bowls and handmade bamboo whisks. Our Purematcha tea sets contain all the essential items for brewing the best-tasting matcha!”

“Our vision is to inspire people through awareness of how this incredible green tea is an amazing addition to a healthy lifestyle. Organic, raw, pure and green it’s a super tea that we want to bring into the lives of everyday people.”

Ensuring a Sustainable Product

“Sustainability is very important to us. We have two young girls under the age of 5, so ensuring that they grow to live in a clean and environmentally safe environment is extremely important to us, as it would be for any parent. This is why we chose to work with an organic family farm in the Uji region of Japan. The Japanese government enforces strict standards to attain JAS accredited organic certification. This means we can guarantee our customers that Purematcha teas are completely free from harmful chemicals and pesticides. It also means that the farmers who work on the farm are safe from any harmful pesticides as well.”

Beyond the farm, the airtight packaging we use to store our Purematcha powder teas in is 100% recyclable. The same goes for the shipping boxes we use to ship out our popular full ensemble matcha tea sets. Using recyclable products wherever possible gives us the peace of mind that we are doing our bit to keep our environmental footprint very small.”

If we think about the lifestyle brands that populate our Instagram feeds, there sometimes isn’t a whole lot that makes one look different from the next.

It’s very easy for brands to get stuck in the dreaded social media rut, posting endless product imagery that doesn’t really resonate with their audience.

This lack of originality also affects the post-purchase experience too. All too often, a customer’s anticipation of a purchase arriving isn’t met by an enjoyable delivery. When the customer experience feels mass-produced, this has a big impact on brand perception.

If a brand treats its own product as something ordinary, rather than exciting and engaging, why are customers going to view it as the latter?

Putting in the effort to ‘dress up’ the unboxing experience makes all the difference to how memorable your brand is. As Steve discovered, investing in custom packaging for Purematcha Teas was the key to building a stronger relationship with their customer base:

“Matcha is a booming industry, and so we find ourselves in a highly competitive market. Getting noticed and standing above the competition is a big challenge for us. We know that the core of our success starts with customer satisfaction and building loyalty with our customers. The challenge at Purematcha is to set up the right impression straight out of the box (literally!).”

“I reflected on past buying experiences where I was immediately won over by impressive, well-thought-out packaging. I recall unboxing my very first Apple iPhone and could see that Apple went through great lengths to perfect the simplistic yet innovative packaging. It definitely left a lasting impression on me, as I still own an iPhone! (albeit not the 2008 model). That minimalist style packaging is something we try to channel in our own line of packaging.”

“We know that first impressions are the lasting ones, so that’s why we recently chose to meticulously wrap each item with noissue custom tissue paper and use Purematcha custom stickers as a seal for each wrapped item. It’s those finishing touches that will build confidence, loyalty and long-lasting relationships with our customers.”

“In many ways, noissue did for me what Apple did for me 11 years ago. noissue co-presented an online branding experience that caught my immediate attention, and I was very impressed. In a few simple steps, noissue’s intuitive online designer allowed me to easily produce draft versions of our Purematcha wrapping paper and stickers. The preview feature meant that I could visualise the final product, and I was able to see the cost upfront without any hidden surprises. The online designer saved us a tonne of time and headache and we are so happy that this service is available to us!”