Starbucks Use of Social Media Keeps Customers Coming Back

Starbucks is no stranger when it comes to social media campaigns.  Many of their campaigns are initiated using Twitter, Facebook and their own website.  Starbucks wants to increase brand awareness as much as possible, and they work hard to do just that.

Starbucks is a very popular place for coffee lovers worldwide.  Thousands of people go to Starbucks everyday for a quick pick-me up or just for the many varieties of coffee they sell.  In May 2009, in an attempt to get Starbucks lovers involved, Starbucks launched an online/offline campaign.  They noticed that daily people are on Facebook or Twitter posting pictures and chatting with friends about what they have been doing during the day.  Taking that into consideration, Starbucks placed pictures in major cities of the US. They then challenged fans to be the first to post those pictures on Facebook and tweet about them.  They used common knowledge of what people do daily and turned it into a game. Starbucks was sure this campaign would be successful, knowing they have 1.5 million Facebook fans and 183,000 Twitter followers.

Included in this campaign Starbucks held a contest for employees to submit headlines for future ads and also made Youtube videos about coffee experts talking about the Starbucks brand.  On the Saturday before elections were held for that year Starbucks also came out with a commercial that appeared on Saturday Night Live announcing a coffee giveaway on Election Day.  As soon as that commercial was put up on Youtube, by Tuesday it was the fourth most viewed video on Youtube.  On Twitter, Starbucks name was being mentioned every eight seconds. 

Starbucks had an advantage over competitors with this campaign because people wanted to talk about it online with their friends.  They did not have to spend millions of dollars for advertising because the millions of fans they already have on Facebook and Twitter did all the advertising for them.   According to the New York Times, this campaign was the biggest marketing effort Starbucks had undertaken.

Not only does Starbucks want to be known as fun and creative, but they also care greatly about what their fans and customers think about their customer service, as well as the coffee they sell.  On their website,, they have a link to go to their “My Starbucks Idea” page.  This page allows any Starbucks fan to give an idea on what could make their business even better.  Some of these ideas include getting free drinks on your birthday, or buying ten cups of coffee and getting the eleventh one free.  Each idea that is submitted is reviewed, then if it is a great idea it is launched.  On the website viewers can comment on any idea that has been submitted to say what they think about it.  Also, each idea will have either a check mark by it (meaning the idea has been launched), a piece of paper by it (the idea is being reviewed), or a piece of paper with a check mark on it (the idea has already been reviewed).  This lets Starbucks lovers know the status of each idea.

My Starbucks Ideas is a place for coffee lovers to chat and brainstorm new ideas to help make Starbucks the best of all coffee businesses.  Starbucks really takes each idea into consideration showing customers that their requests aren’t going unheard.  They care about the customers and want to make customer experiences at  Starbucks the best there are.