Rate the Ad: Starbucks: It's not just coffee, it's Starbucks
The ailing coffee brand sells premium coffee over value.Published: May 20, 2009
Commenter ajmuir says, "In regards to the Terminator Game: I have to say that it was nice in the beginning, when they tried to make it look/feel real. The Skynet website strove to be authentic, and to draw players into the world of the movie. However, as a player, I found it sad when the emails started coming out that so obviously screamed 'Hey! We're losing players! Don't forget about us!' ...I guess what I'm trying to say is that the game became no fun to me the moment they stopped trying to make it look/feel real. Pretending I was in that world was what made me interested in it, and I only disliked it more, the more they said "it's a game." The resistance twitter doesn't even try to disguise itself as an underground transmission anymore. All the mystery, the adventure, is gone, because they brought the real world into it."
This week, we turn to some copy-centric Starbucks posters popping up in six major markets this week. The text-heavy outdoor campaign from the coffee giant and BBDO tout coffee quality over value under the banner "It's not just coffee, it's Starbucks." Slogans on the posters, emblazoned over what looks like burlap coffee sacks, take a whack at cheaper coffee offerings, like those from competitors McDonald's and Dunkin Donuts. Taking the campaign to Twitter, the coffee chain offered Starbucks gift cards yesterday to the first people to find the posters and reply tweet with a photo of one.
Earlier this month, the coffee chain ran long form, copy heavy newspaper ads detailing the company's story, specifically its heritage and ethical business practices. Via Ad Age: BBDO's chief creative David Lubars acknowledged that not everyone is going to read the ads all the way through. "If you have a lot to say, it's good to say it," he said, citing ad legend David Ogilvy. "Even if they don't get it all, they'll get that Starbucks is a company with a story to tell."
What do you think? Does the chain's reaction to the down-market threat warrant these many words? Is this much copy ever effective? Is Starbucks smart to sell premium coffee over value? Share your thoughts, below.