Relationships Drive Business

Strengthening Customer Engagement to Propel Your Business

Five Things Starbucks Learned Yesterday August 6, 2010

Yesterday Starbucks asked Facebook users how long their drink order is. Short like espresso. Or long, like vente skinny extra shot soy caramel extra hot no whip latte.
Guess how many responses they got? By 11pm it was 6371. This morning its 11,000. And over 11,000 “likes” for the same comment.
That’s a lot of engagement.

How did they get that kind of response?

Could very well have to do with timing of the post – Thursday morning about 7am (eastern). 7am is the beginning of the day in the US, when coffee drinkers have coffee on their mind. And then as each time zone rolled out of bed and checked Facebook, they all chimed in. I would bet if we looked at personal profiles of comments we would see a wave from east to west like the path of the sun.
Also, they asked people a question about themselves and not about Starbucks. People love to answer questions about themselves. (Prime rule of social platforms is it’s about them not you.)

What was in this for the Starbucks team?

  1. They found out directly from the source what they like to drink.
  2. They can match that against what their stores are ringing up to see if there’s a correlation or a mis-match. Correlation is good. Mis-match signals people are buying some stuff elsewhere.
  3. They can explore what’s popular. Maybe there’s a trend they need to elbow in on.
  4. Cheap research. Who responded men or women. Do long drink orders take longer to make or just longer to listen to? Either way is longer, higher staffing costs for the same beverage. Longer wait for the guy behind them in line. It all adds up to the experience inside the stores.
  5. World wide, cheap research.

Getting the engagement isn’t the end of the road. It’s the beginning of the exploration. BTW-espresso, neat.


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