Have you heard of Starbucks?
Of course, you have. Everyone has heard of Starbucks. You’ve probably seen the Unicorn Latte on your Instagram feed (I enjoyed reading the stories of how gross it actually tasted)! You may just rely on that familiar green sign to direct your bleary eyes toward a hot cup of Pike Place. Either way, you know that Starbucks, as a company, has learned how to use online and offline marketing extremely effectively.
In fact, there are many lessons that most businesses could learn from how Starbucks does things.
Personally, I’d like to know how Starbucks was able to make their rewards program so sticky. People use it all. the. time. What got those people – for lack of a better word – addicted to using the app on their smart phone?
Examples of Successful Online Marketing
Starbucks has really capitalized on social media, more than almost any other company with an online presence. Specifically, they use Twitter as much as possible to engage with their followers. If you follow them, they’ll follow you back.
Starbucks Engages With Their Customers
They engage in conversations with the audience. That might be wishing students good luck on finals or it might be talking about Starbucks nail art. Users can even Tweet a gift card to anyone they like. One of the funniest Buzzfeed articles is “27 Tweets About Starbucks That’ll Actually Make You Laugh.”
Starbucks Enables Their Customers to Connect
Starbucks offers their customers free Wi-Fi and that perk has encouraged many customers to set up camp in the coffee shop. Rather than to get their coffee and head back out the door, people often work from the coffee shop. Once customers connect to the Starbucks wifi, they can even enjoy the Starbucks Digital Experience, which can be pretty useful. Some services, like USA Today, that generally charge are free through Starbucks.
Starbucks Encourages Customers to Spend More
Do you have the Starbucks app on your smart phone? This easy to use app has made it very convenient for customers to pay on the fly. But the app does far more than that. It allows you to accumulate stars to cash in for free drinks. Those stars and the program they are part of are fun to use and fun to watch. It’s a win-win all the way around and it has been a huge success with customers.
Effective Examples of Offline Marketing
You know them; you see them every year. That iconic red cup kicks off the holidays every year. When you see someone carrying red Starbucks cup, a curl of steam rising above, it triggers a tiny part of your brain that says “it’s time for those special holiday drinks!” They created a simple object which elicits positive emotions and memories and the response is measurable in literal dollars. Other small businesses should take note and figure out how they can match their products/services to a season and turn on their customers ‘joy.’
Often, Starbucks runs contests where participants race to be the first to post a new ad or poster. This helps cover a range of marketing tactics both offline and online. They cleverly integrate their website and their social media to encourage customers to get involved.
These are just a few examples of how Starbucks has kept ahead of the pack when it comes to marketing. It’s up to us to try to mimic their success, to break it down and determine how we can have the same kind of success. What is one way you can think of to mimic the successful online and offline marketing efforts of Starbucks?