Why is Starbucks So Successful on Social Media? (It’s Definitely Not Their Coffee)

Posted on November 1, 2019 by Ash Bennett

Over the years, Starbucks has grown into a coffee-making giant. But the quality of their coffee still isn’t as widely accepted as they would like, and in Australia they still can’t compete with smaller coffeehouses that focus on service and quality drinks.

It’s been shown time and time again that quality usually outperforms consistency. So why is Starbucks doing so well?

It’s not always what’s in the package. It’s the package and how it’s presented, as well as the company’s promotion strategy.

What You Can Learn from the Unicorn Frappuccino® Blended Crème

If you’ve been online, you’ve probably heard about this magical unicorn drink that had swept across social media sites. But what was it that made it so magical?

Few customers seemed to truly enjoy the drink. Some went so far as to say it tasted awful. But what made this drink a success wasn’t the flavor or how amazing it tasted–it was the way it looked.

The bright-pink frozen drink with contrasting blue swirls was topped off with whipped cream and, yes, pink and blue sparkles. It looked amazing, especially when you threw a few filters on it before uploading it to Instagram.

Appearance can have a significant effect on how buyers make their decisions. While it’s not a great long-term strategy, it’s safe to say Starbucks got their money’s worth. This is the perfect example of how changing up the appearance of a product can boost sales.

 Create a Sense of Urgency with Limited-Time Offers  

While the importance of presentation to a campaign was a big takeaway for the company, the sense of urgency they created by making it available only for a limited time helped boost short-term sales.

Creating a sense of urgency helps with holiday and special event sales. The repeated mention that a product is only available for a short period encourages action. Buyers often put off getting a certain product until they just forget about it. By creating a sense of urgency, you keep it on their mind.

Know Your Audience

If anyone else had tried to put out a product like this, it might not have gone over so well. But any good marketing team does research on their audience, gets to know their buyers, and pays attention to social media trends. Luckily for Starbucks, this product was a hit, especially for their younger customers.

Let Social Media Do the Work

Starbucks didn’t have to do much advertising. Their customers did most of the advertising and social sharing for them.

Once the unicorn drink was out, pictures were plastered all over social media–Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, you name it. With colors that vivid, it was a perfect match for the photo-sharing crowd on social media, particularly Instagram.

Having a connection with your audience on social media has its perks. Creating a product that gets attention like this might not be cost-effective in the long run, but it’s perfect for creating hype around things like new product releases, limited-time events, and holidays. Release a product they love, and you’ll get additional traffic just from social media and word-of-mouth referrals.

While unicorns may not be part of an everyday marketing strategy, you can take notes on how powerful social media, presentation and a sense of urgency can be when planning product promotions.

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