I am a coffee lover. Those of you who know me understand that the coffee aficionado in me is linked to my creative thinking. It also helps me to feel connected socially, both in the digital world and in the real world of actual human-to-human interaction. You are probably thinking, what in the world does coffee have to do with all of this? — Good question.
It’s Not Just About The Coffee; It’s So Much More
Let’s talk about Starbucks for a moment. If you happen to be one of the millions who walk in the doors of a Starbucks, you experience something that’s more than just a warm cup of coffee. Yes, they can be more expensive than your other friendly neighborhood coffee shop. But did you know they offers so much more?
Those of you who are frequent Starbucks visitors probably know where I am going with this. Especially if you are inclined to enjoy the experience to the fullest. Here’s what I mean. As I mentioned, coffee helps me to feel connected. When I go to Starbucks, there are three ways that they engage me with their brand, and each of those ways meets me where I am and doesn’t expect me to go crazy and provide them with every bit of personal information I have just to get something – I like that. They are using content marketing to engage me and keep me interested – Brilliant!
If you’re a marketer, you may want to focus on this part, because Starbucks is clearly hitting a homerun here and the rest of us can learn from them, even if we aren’t in the retail coffee business. However, we are in the customer experience business.
In-Store: The next time you go in a Starbucks store, take a look at all the signage and messaging on the walls, on the table where the condiments are and at the register. If you haven’t noticed, they are communicating a clear message to you the customer. In my opinion, that message is, Starbucks is not just selling coffee. They are providing you with an experience that is driven by content. Much of the content is designed to warm your heart and make you feel good about making a decision to spend your time and money with Starbucks.
The Starbucks App: When I enter Starbucks, I click on the mobile app on my iPhone. The first thing I notice is how they have rewarded me. I like that. It keeps me coming back. Also, they give me a free song to enjoy. I like that too. Starbucks has made my experience with them easy and enjoyable. We can all learn from that.
Online: The next time you think about Starbucks, also take a look at their website. Yes, as a marketer, it’s well done. But it also provides the customer with a deeper understanding of the company yet isn’t a boring corporate message. It still looks and feels like the customer is most important.
Coffee and content marketing may be two totally different things in our lives. However, they can be merged to provide experiences for customers that are enjoyable. The three things listed above meet the customers where they are and give them relevant and engaging information. The In-store experience is physical. The App is on your smartphone and accessible anywhere. The website is also accessible anywhere. Starbucks has definitely done their research on their customers to provide three levels of service that reach their customers. When you get a moment, take a look at all the different ways they provide rich-digital content to help you enjoy your coffee experience even further. Wow… coffee really can be a tool for content marketing. I have to admit, I never thought of that before.
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Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/scott-macfarland/
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