Starbucks UK launched a promotional campaign during 2013 which offered customers the chance to buy a tall latte for £1.50 on Mondays before 11am. The campaign ran from January 6th to February 6th 2013.
My initial reaction to this marketing campaign was one of despair and concern for the future of the Starbucks brand.
In my personal opinion it is totally illogical to launch this promotion. The global coffee chain which was voted “the best loved brand on social media” in 2012 seemed to have taken little to no care in considering the target audience, the reason behind the promotion and how they would create effective buzz through the various online and print media outlets.
Here are a few reasons I think Starbucks UK failed with the launch of the “Mondays Can Be Great” campaign.
1 – Celebrating A Day Of The Week For All The Wrong Reasons
Did you know that the first man walked on the moon on Monday or that Big Ben starting bonging on a Monday? Those are just two of the “awesome facts” you will learn whilst watching the video.
The real question Starbucks advertising team should have been asking themselves during the planning stage is “Do people care?”
It is a given that most of us hate Monday mornings. The irony is that Starbucks UK decided not to focus on that in the video and instead talked about the famous events which have taken place on a Monday.
If they had considered what Monday really means to most people they would have realised we don’t care about these landmark events and instead care about getting the extra five minutes in bed.
2 – Lack Of Social Conversations About The Promotion
If Starbucks wants to start regaining trust it needs the support of existing and potential customers on social networks, blogs and forums talking about the great deal they are getting with their tall Latte. (which is a grand total of 60p difference from the regular price)
Starbucks haven’t exactly had much luck with social media recently.
Last month Starbucks UK became tangled up in a social media disaster when an official Starbucks created Twitter hashtag #spreadthecheer was hijacked by people complaining about the coffee chain’s tax practices. To add insult to injury the Twitter conversations were being displayed on a public video screen in the National Gallery in real-time.
So when you consider that their last Twitter campaign wasn’t exactly a success you can perhaps understand why there is no conversation on Twitter being conducted via a hashtag created by Starbucks UK.
If you go searching for keyphrases on Twitter such as “tall latte starbucks” you can see some conversations going on about the promotion.
However as with all social media promotions the conversations that do occur can be vitally important to the success of an online marketing campaign.
Here are just a few great social media campaigns which generated a lot of discussion online:
- Fun Social Media Promos Feed Souplantation Customer Frenzy
- How LinkedIn Brought $72,000 in Sales for PostcardMania
- How 3 Companies Took Content Marketing to the Next Level
3 – Bland Landing Page On The Starbucks UK Website
It doesn’t take a genius to see that the Starbucks UK marketing team clearly didn’t put much effort into their landing page.
The page is a total mess. There are short bullet points with links included below with zero appealing visuals to draw the attention. There is the text “Mondays can be great” just randomly included at the bottom of the page (which is probably their “smart idea” for SEO!).
If they were serious about making this promotional campaign successful they should have included more appealing visuals, less text and a social media conversation stream. (although perhaps they are worried about have a repeat of the National Gallery incident.)
4 – Failure To Create A Promotion That Will Restore Trust
I appreciate that Starbucks haven’t exactly got an easy task to restore trust in their brand. However I honestly believe that this campaign isn’t exactly the trust building exercise they should undertaking for the brand right now.
In my opinion Starbucks need to:
- Allow open and honest conversations about them to occur through their official social media channels
- Be more accountable for their actions.
- Create more inspiring and thoughtful promotional campaigns to get people talking.
Once they start doing those three things I believe they can start gradually restoring trust.