Bad Coffee

Retail, Food Services

Cuppers, a Lethbridge, Alberta-based coffee retailer, needed help launching its nitro-infused cold brew. We got excited about working with a client that wasn’t afraid to take chances in its branding and marketing.

Key Services
Brand strategy
Brand expression
Experience design
Merchandising and retailing

A competitive review—and advantage

We knew we wanted to focus on the fact that cold brew has the most caffeine of any ready-to-drink product. (No other kind of coffee has more of the stimulant.) And a review of the competition told us that a simple colour palette would help Bad Coffee stand out.

Three images show Bad Coffee marketing material and the websites eCommerce experience.

Standing out and packing a punch

When one of our designers said that sipping Bad Coffee was like being hit in the face, we knew we had the inspiration for our type treatment, illustration, and black-and-white colour scheme.

A cartoon-like illustration of a man being punched in the face sits above the words "Sweet and unapologetically dark" and a tweet from Bad Coffee's Twitter account.
A page from the Bad Coffee website features cartoons of a grandma and a robot as well as a brief history of the company.

A strong soft launch

We launched Bad Coffee with a Shopify site along with owned social and online channels. We also created sales sheets to help the brand get on grocery-store shelves. We outlined a strategy for expansion across Canada and the U.S., but the initial focus was on Alberta. The results were good. Our soft launch saw sales of $9,000, with 2,200 cans being snapped up.