In a sea of artificial intelligence and blockchain related startups, it’s not a common sight to find coffee related startups. After months of conceptualising and proofing, we finally got to showcase Morning during the RISE conference in Hong Kong two weeks ago. It’s an especially pivotal moment for the team since this is our first time showing the machine we’ve been working on since early 2018. The feedback started pouring in as soon as the conference opened its doors, and the response was overwhelming yet fulfilling. Here’s our 5 takeaways from RISE that we’d like to share:
1. There’s a lot of coffee drinkers in a tech conference!
Tech entrepreneurs like ourselves indulge in caffeine due to the nature of the startup working environment and also, to fuel productivity. The time to make a cup of coffee or buy from a cafe can take up significant time away from work. Hence, the relevance of Nespresso(R) brewing, where you get a cup of coffee with a touch of a button. Visitors to our booth were amazed by the delicious capsule alternatives out there.
2. “Specialty coffee” is not part of everyone’s dictionary yet
We were delighted by the amount of knowledge on Specialty Coffee from the conversations at our booth. Visitors were curious to learn what Specialty Coffee capsules are all about and how they are different. The common perception on coffee is that it’s a beverage people consume for the caffeine fix but not many are aware of the flavour offerings of high quality coffee. It’s like how a Fuji Apple tastes different compared to a Jonagold apple. We’re not Apple experts but coffee is equally and maybe even more diverse as a fruit.
3. Convenience is king
Majority of the startups exhibiting at RISE are mainly focusing on providing convenience to their clients, users, or partners whether with the help from AI or blockchain. The secret sauce is still providing the best end to end solution for their users. Ubereats for example are constantly improving the app to the finest details (from the app launch load time to delivering the food to hungry customers) to satisfy their user’s needs.
4. Be authentic and original
Content marketing is another huge topic at RISE and we’re no stranger to that.Jessica Pence, the Chief Commercial Officer of Carlsberg took the unconventional approach to tell Carlsberg’s story by admitting they’re not the best brewery. While running the 'Probably not the best beer in the world' campaign for 4 years allowed Carlsberg to refine their methods in making beer and making their beer one of the best again. While many might have a different view on this approach, Jessica mentioned how being authentic or relevant is sometimes admitting that they’re not the best. Brands often forget about their identity when they’re constantly going after trends which doesn’t favor loyalty in the long run. Listen to your gut. It’s probably is right, most of the time.
5. Innovate and keep an open mind
In a tech conference, you’ll often hear these 3 buzzwords: innovation, disruption and solutions. We’re fortunate to have so many people come by our booth to talk about ideas, listening to us explain what we are and who we are, and most importantly, feedback on how we can improve. Innovation is something that RISE preached over and over again in every talk. Hence, what will allow us and everyone to innovate is to constantly keep an open mind and let your imagination run wild.
The RISE experience was definitely an eye opener for us, and we were glad to be part of this amazing event. If you’ve been to RISE, let us know what are your thoughts below!