Starbucks Caffeine Phoenix Rising

February 29, 2008


Three and one-half hours with no venti half-caf skinny mocha yuppieccinos from Starbucks. I’ve managed restaurants. It’s not that hard to send all workers through a half-day training without cutting off the umbilical cash flow cord.

Nope, this was a way to send a marketing message through an operational channel. We’re serious. We hear your complaints about eroding quality. We will do something big to fix them. If you’ve written us off, come try again. Clean slate. Caffeine phoenix rising from the ashes.

And, incidentally, you’d really miss us if we were gone. Remember when we weren’t here? Don’t take us for granted. Scarcity sells.

The best marketing has nothing to do with ad spend. Call Stephen Colbert and ask him how much he’d charge to film a three-minute commercial in which he pulls a cup out of a trash can and drinks from it. Repeat for every talk show host in the US, add it up, and compare it to the foregone earnings from a Tuesday evening.


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