The Year of Big Sampling: Starbucks turn ~ Brand Mix

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Year of Big Sampling: Starbucks turn

Photo: Esparta Flickr CC

Just a sniff, the merest hint of free food in our office is enough to cause a stampede into the kitchen. And, before you get all holier than thou, I'm sure it's the same in your office and everywhere else. We crave free food, whether it be leftover pizza or the latest microwaved something that Costco is handing out.

This year, it seems, has become the year where marketers have latched on to our hunger for free to create mega events. First, there was Denny's who set a tough-to beat standard with its free Grand Slam breakfast. Well executed and supported by a Superbowl ad. Then there was KFC that completely screwed up its own giveaway setting off a Twitter firestorm when it stopped honoring its free coupons.

Today it was Starbucks offering free pastries with the purchase of a beverage. The interesting thing about the Starbucks event was that it leveraged its already strong roots in social media to generate interest and attention. As Adam Ostrow reports on Mashable, Starbucks was the top trending topic on Twitter and had almost 600,000 confirmed "attendees" on its Facebook event page. Much more like the quickly circulating rumors of free food downstairs.

1 comment:

Denise Lee Yohn said...

i'm curious to know how many people used social media to comment on the food after they took advantage of the promo.

my brief and unscientific scan of social media turned up very little coverage of what the products were actually like/whether or not people liked them (other than for being free)/whether they tasted different from starbucks' previous "unreal" food/etc.

if there was indeed a lack of buzz about the food after the fact, i wonder if it was really a worthwhile promo...

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