Marketing Strategy Case Studies: The Starbucks Experience

Marketing Strategy Case Studies: The Starbucks Experience



– 27 mins, 2015

Key Topics

Marketing Strategy
Retailing
Corporate Social Responsibility
Globalisation

Starbucks is the essential success story of the American capitalist dream. From humble beginnings in 1971 as a Seattle coffee store, it’s become a multinational with over 21,000 outlets in 63 countries. Its brand is universally known.

HOW DID THEY DO IT? Starbucks’ success owes a lot to the vision of its guiding light, CEO Howard Schultz, who preaches an almost evangelical brand of caring capitalism, at the same time focusing relentlessly on the customer experience. Acquisition, brand-stretching, social media, and new channel development have all played a part. They put a lot of stress on caring for their staff and the in-store atmosphere. They want customers to feel it’s “their Starbucks”.

GOOD CITIZEN? CEO Howard Schultz talks about creating “a philosophically different business” but is it really? Critics point to low pay and scheduling pressures for staff, tax avoidance and, above all, the pittance developing world farmers receive for the coffee beans.

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