The $75.00 Travel Mug … and a New Competitor?
Some research has shown that a habit can be formed in 21 to 28 days. The number of days to create a habit can be debated, but the reality is that purchasers are likely to have these boutique beverages every day to take full advantage of their "deal." As a result, I would guess that sales of Espresso type drink sales for Starbucks would go up in February. It's brilliant, really.
And in another stroke of branding genius, Starbucks also offers a very limited $450.00 metal gift card. This year only 1,000 were made and they were only available on the luxury website www.gilt.com. Last year Starbucks produced 5,000 designer cards and they sold out in about six minutes. This year, by making them even more exclusive, they sold out in less time than it takes to order a latte. Here's the story.
Starbucks is also in the corporate branding business. Did you know you can get custom branded Starbucks cards, co-branded with a company logo, and a custom imprinted card sleeve?
Looking at the big picture, we see that Starbucks is actually a promotional products supplier and the distributor. These custom branded cards are sold direct by Starbucks. A point worth noting is that a large percentage of gift cards go unclaimed, which is yet another benefit for Starbucks. Again, it's brilliant.
I've been working on doing something in our industry with the gift being custom branded Starbucks cards. An industry colleague, who I highly respect, sees this as being negative. His thinking is that we should be using our own medium as gifts, which of course make sense.
The branded Starbucks card, however, is actually a promotional product; but an industry supplier does not sell it. The card features branding and the card sleeve has a marketing message as well. Our industry is challenged with all types of competitors. Is this good or bad? Your input is welcomed.