Word-of-Mouth and Referral Marketing Blog

How Singapore-based TWG Tea Became The World’s Finest Tea Salon

Founded in 2008, TWG Tea has quickly become a household name in the luxury tea industry.

TWG tea salon and boutiques can be found in upscale malls in major capitals of the world. Luxury retailers such as Harrods and Dean & Deluca also distribute TWG products.

Since its inception, TWG has gained a following from tea-drinkers all over the world, especially the high-spending class who love to indulge.

How did this Singapore brand go global so fast?

1. Luxurious in-store customer experience

twg store front

TWG retail stores are lavishly furnished with exquisite decor and finely polished glass panels lined with a neatly organised selection of tea and other tea accessories.

TWG products have sophisticated luxury packaging, with bold colours and intricate designs on high quality print. The beautifully packaged boxes of tea alone are enough of a visual treat.

Taha Bouqdib, founder and creative eye of TWG, regularly jet-sets to fashion capitals around the world seeking inspiration for new ideas, and incorporates the latest trends, colours and styles into TWG’s design and packaging to appeal to the young and modern crowd.

Should you require assistance in-store, sales assistants behind the counter will gladly attend to your every need with excellent customer service.

As Maranda Barnes, Co-founder and Director of Communications and Business Development at TWG Tea says, “You have to be a connoisseur to work at TWG Tea. Every of our 3,000 staff members are required to have extensive knowledge about the beverage they’re selling.”

All you need to do is describe the profile of tea leaves you are looking for, maybe even the kind of aroma and flavors you enjoy and the sales assistant will bring out an assortment of tea leaves for you to choose from.

Shopping for tea has never been so thoroughly enjoyable.

Word-of-mouth tip: An excellent in-store experience that makes customers feel well-attended to will truly stand out. A happy customer will tell his or her friends, and positive publicity for the brand will spread naturally via WOM.

2.Unique and specialty tea offerings

twg jasmine monkey tea chinese new year special

TWG’s tea selection is the largest in the world, with over 800 different exclusive tea blends from all tea-producing countries.

TWG develops special varieties of teas together with the most renowned tea estates.

TWG also innovates a new and special blend of tea for every upcoming season or special occasion.

This Chinese New Year, TWG released the Jasmine Monkey King tea to commemorate the Chinese year of the monkey. The tea features a Chinese green tea base, fragranced with night-blooming jasmine.

Word-of-mouth tip: With exciting and innovative new flavors to look forward to every festive season, customers are constantly kept on their toes for new product launches that are hyped up before launch via WOM.

3. The grand tea salon experience

twg interior ngee ann city

The TWG tea salon is up-scale and posh. All blends of TWG tea are available for order at the tea salon, either hot or iced, along with high tea and main course options.

The food options at TWG are conceptualised with TWG tea blends in mind. The food items thus feature tea-infused salads, pastries, main courses as well as cocktails.

We’ve all probably tried the classic eggs benedict or chocolate lava cake, but TWG’s hollandaise sauce emboldened with Earl Grey Gentlemen tea and chocolate fondant laced Vanilla Bourbon tea sound incredibly difficult to pass up.

A good number of TWG retail stores have a tea salon located next to it, allowing customers to enjoy and appreciate their choice of tea that is blended to perfection by in-house tea connoisseurs.

This luxurious tea-tasting and dining experience shows customers how to appreciate finely brewed tea, how to pair tea, and generally introduces them to the wonders of tea enjoyment.

Few customers leave the tea salon without making a retail purchase thereafter.

Word-of-mouth tip: TWG’s tea salon is a great complement to its retail outlet. The tea salon gives customers the opportunity to enjoy TWG’s luxury teas, as well as to share with their friends about the latest teas they tried. (More WOM!) 

4. Launch of m-commerce platform

twg tea boutique mobile

Instead of going down the traditional e-commerce route, TWG opted to take its first online presence mobile, with the launch of  TWG Tea on mobile app stores.

Barnes said that the decision to launch a mobile app was informed by statistics which showed the increasing ubiquity of mobile usage among luxury goods customers.

The TWG Tea app features all the different types of TWG products available, with descriptions of the tea, how best to enjoy it, and prices too.

The app also has a search feature that allows customers to find the perfect tea, based on input preferences such as occasion, type of tea leaf and taste profile.

The development team behind the app aims to incorporate more interactive elements to the app, letting customers connect with the brand on a more personal and emotional level.

Word-of-mouth tip: M-commerce is a great way to target customers in the luxury market, who are generally tech-savvy. The mobile app provides customers with all the product information that they need to make an informed choice, and also provides customers with the latest scoop from the brand. This allows them to access (and share about) the brand on-the-go.

Recap: The factors that led to TWG’s success were…

  1. An incredibly attractive store experience that people will keep talking about
  2. Unique, seasonal teas that keep people hyped for the next, exclusive flavors
  3. A ‘grand tea experience’ via careful, personalised service
  4. Providing even more personalised service via a mobile app
Andrea Lee

Andrea Lee

Andrea is an undergraduate majoring in international relations and East Asian politics. She enjoys a good run in the city.

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