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Open Doors Coffee House in Johnson City, Tennessee Celebrates Four Years of Success

Published: December 24, 2020
Updated: December 27, 2020

As Open Doors Coffee House celebrated its fourth anniversary, Owners Michael and Sherry Marion reflected on the qualities that earned their coffee shop a Best in Johnson City award for the past three years. 

A Friendly, Local Gathering Place

Housed in a former Long John Silver’s restaurant building, Open Doors has become a gathering place for locals.

“Our mission is to provide a great place for terrific coffee, service and community,” said Michael Marrion. “We are locally owned and very connected with the community.”

“We like to see our front porch as a place to connect with people in the adjoining neighborhoods,” he added. “We have loved on and redeemed this little corner in Johnson City.”

Sherry Marion says friendly service is central to their success. “Our staff knows customer names, personal details and, of course, the way they like their drink,” she said. “They love that we sometimes have their drink ready as they walk in or pull up to the drive through!”

To support the local community, the Marions collaborate on discount cards for many organizations, offer discounts to several businesses and house local artisans’ work.

“We desire to continue to grow and be a substantial source of income for our non-profit, Rise Up for Kids!” Michael said. “We started this local ministry in 1994.”

Learning to Open a Coffee Shop through the 7 Steps to Success

“When my husband began thinking and dreaming of having a coffee shop, he discovered Crimson Cup,” Sherry said.

“He went to visit the Columbus, Ohio headquarters and decided we would benefit by partnering with your company.”

For almost 30 years, Crimson Cup has helped entrepreneurs open and run unique independent coffee shops serving their local communities.

“As an independent coffee shop owner, you don’t have to go it alone!” said Founder and President Greg Ubert. “It’s been a pleasure to work with Michael and Sherry over the past four years, and we look forward to many more years of helping them grow their business.”

Budding coffee shop owners like the Marions learn the ins and outs of efficient operations through our 7 Steps to Success coffee shop franchise alternative program.

The program grew based on Greg’s book, 7 Steps to Success: a Commonsense Guide to Succeed in Specialty Coffee.

“We give new owners everything they need to succeed – starting with writing a solid coffee shop business plan and choosing profitable location and continuing through creating an efficient layout, selecting the right equipment, training owners and baristas and more,” Greg said.

The 7 Steps program offers many benefits of a coffee shop franchise, without franchise fees, royalties, or even a long-term contract.

“Crimson Cup has done a lot of the hard work by figuring out and fine tuning processes and finding what works best. There’s so much you have to consider and figure out,” she added. It’s much simpler to have Crimson Cup provide layout, equipment, products and training as a proven system.” 

Sherry Marrion

Michael said Crimson Cup’s hands-on training and ongoing availability has been “incredible,” adding, “I have found their consultants to be kind, friendly and very available to help.”

Customers Rave About Open Doors Coffee, Roasted by Crimson Cup

“Our customers love our drinks and declare they are the best ever,” Sherry said.

“Many have switched to our coffeehouse after trying one of our drinks.” 

“They love that we are local and not a big corporation.”

Among many national honors, Crimson Cup coffee won 2017 and 2020 Good Food Awards – which recognize the best tasting, most responsibly sourced coffees in the United States – and was named a finalist for a 2021 Good Food Award.

Secrets of Open Doors’ Success

open doors coffee shop johnson city tennessee
Open Doors has won the Best of Johnson City award for Best Coffee Shop for three years in a row.

“It comes down to hard work, excellent service, connecting with your customers, continuing to fine tune your processes and systems, always learning and growing!” Michael said.

He had several thoughts to share with entrepreneurs who are dreaming about opening their own coffee shops.

“Learn all you can about running a business. Seek out successful business owners and learn from them.

“Before you start, you need a substantial business plan and wise counselors,” he added.  “Have the right people in the right seat on the bus.  Make sure you have a strong financial person in place – a trustworthy watchdog to give you sound advice.

“In conclusion, I would absolutely encourage others to seek out Crimson Cup,” he said.

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