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Feature they can’t live without: Survey builder

New Jersey native and Indiana resident Tamika Catchings is a top-tier athlete. Having played in the WNBA for 16 seasons and earning four Olympic gold medals, Tamika has had an illustrious career. Once she left the court, it was time to find a new passion, which unexpectedly came in the form of a tea shop. 

Tamika Catchings: professional basketball player and tea shop owner

After Tea’s Me Cafe, a local Indianapolis favorite, was set to close in 2017, Tamika decided to buy the business. Since then, she has expanded to a second location in Tarkington Park and a third location at Ivy Tech Community College. Tamika successfully sustained her first tea house by assembling a supportive staff, creating a subscription service, and investing in ecommerce. Marketing the business through events (virtual and in-person) and digital methods like email marketing and social media has helped the company move past sustainability and into profitable expansion.

Tea’s Me Cafe is a local favorite for Indy area residents and visitors

Community conversations

Starting as a humble in-person cafe experience, Tea’s Me Cafe soon became a cultural center point for the community by hosting regular in-person and online events. “I think the thing that people love when they come here is the culture,” Tamika said. Tamika uses an integration with WooCommerce to check attendees into in-person events with a QR code. “The QR code has been great,” Tamika said of the feature. 

In 2020, Tamika began a program called the Tea’s Me Community Conversation to “create a platform and a space that people can come and be free.” Tamika has geared the Community Conversation toward social issues within the community. “All the stuff we do is community-centric, but the majority of the things…I focus on youth. We focus on fitness, literacy, and youth empowerment.” 

After the success of her basketball career, Tamika said, “I didn’t get into it [running Tea’s Me Cafe] to get rich. I got into it because of the community and to bring people together and build this.”

An email newsletter from Tea’s Me promotes their Community Conversations.
Tea’s Me Cafe serves steaming cups of oolong, black, and green teas, daily.
Teas so good they are award-winning

Scoring big with Constant Contact

Tamika began using Constant Contact to market her business in April 2022. “What I love about Constant Contact is everything is under one umbrella.” Having a centralized marketing platform helps Tamika and her team collaboratively craft email newsletters, create event registrations, and design and schedule social media posts. 

Constant Contact is helping Tea’s Me to achieve one of their biggest goals, which is automating their business. From how they brew tea to behavior-triggered emails to social media, streamlining their processes is a challenge they are working toward resolving through every aspect of the business. Automated paths built out in Constant Contact help them to automatically send order confirmation emails and thank you emails. “I just love that — the ease and automation [of Constant Contact],” said Tamika. 

 The Tea’s Me team uses the Constant Contact survey builder to craft surveys to gather feedback

One of Tamika’s goals for marketing her business is to continue growing her email list. Tamika uses text-to-join and a custom landing page to help her build her list. “The text has been great,” said Tamika. A healthy list of contacts means that Tamika has more room to segment her list and hone in on the particular interests of her audience. 

Surveys let Tamika know what her audience wants to know about her business. Respondents get to say ‘I want to know about your events,’ ‘I want to know about your tea,’ and Tamika uses the results of these surveys to better segment her email lists. She can also gauge audience interest using reporting tools like a heat map. Tamika’s information from the heat map helps her craft better email content that is more likely to engage her audience. 

Tamika has watched her business grow by using digital marketing tools

A cuppa with Tamika Catchings 

Since 2017, Tamika Catchings has worked to reinvigorate a beloved local favorite into a thriving multi-location business. With the help of digital marketing tools like Constant Contact, Tamika has grown an audience big enough to support and expand her business. If you find yourself strolling the streets of Indianapolis and thirst sets in, or you want to cozy up with a book, or perhaps share a cup with friends, head over to one of Tea’s Me Cafe’s three locations. To learn more about Tamika and Tea’s Me Cafe, listen to her Be A Marketer podcast episode below.