By Aimee Chanthadavong

More than two decades since the first Muffin Break outlet opened in Coolangatta Queensland, the new look of the Australian-owned and operated franchise brand was launched at Birkenhead Point Outlet Centre in Sydney.

The revamped café design features a softer colour palette of warm hues, full-length and transparent muffin cooling cabinets and other unique trimmings such as light fixtures that resemble cooking-whisks.

The Birkenhead Point café-kiosk also boasts a spacious layout and visible kitchen, which is a change from the days of the enclosed and somewhat clinical-looking baking areas. This will allow customers to witness the trained Muffin Break team ‘Bake Every Day and Grind Every Cup’ – an endorsement which will be displayed as a focal point of each new-look café.

“We want to remain as relevant as possible as we can. Most customers love Muffin Break but said we could improve upon a few things and this was absolutely the reason for this rebrand. We worked closely with IdeaWorks and they played a major role in supporting us find the identity of the new store,” Drew Eide, Foodco national marketing manager, told RetailBiz.

The reinvigoration of the Muffin Break brand is the result of recent market research commissioned by the Foodco Group which owns the Muffin Break, Jamaica Blue and Dreamy Donuts franchises.

According to Eide, the new look has been designed to enhance each customer’s ‘me moment’ – that is, a brief break in any busy day to simply enjoy a great-tasting coffee that’s good value, with a freshly-baked treat on the side.

“Our customers are looking for a little break. They are very busy mums or retirees who are looking for a really deserved treat or a fuel to get them through the rest of the day. We want to be able to deliver an environment that will give them that well deserved break.”

A myriad of modifications specifically designed to enhance each ‘me moment’ for customers will be gradually applied to all Muffin Break marketing communications, including updating the Muffin Break Club loyalty program.

“What we’re doing now is we have a very powerful loyalty program. It’s a plastic loyalty program card at the moment but we’ll be involving a smartphone application version of it soon so consumers can either carry the card or have it on their phone. The reason being is more and more people have smartphones so we’re looking at that technology and looking at ways to add value to the brand,” Eide said.

The revamped look will now be the model for new stores, with plans for another six to eight stores to open before the end of the year. Meanwhile, existing stores due for a refurbishment will also adopt the new design.