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Complete 4Ps Marketing Mix of Starbucks

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The Starbucks Corporation is an American multinational chain of Coffeehouse and Roastery reserves that is World famous for its Premium Quality coffee. Starbucks has 32,600 coffeehouse chain stores in 83 countries around the world. Starbucks offers varieties of coffee Since 1971.

In this blog, we shall be discussing the marketing mix of Starbucks Let us start with getting to know the company better first.

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About Starbucks

The first store of Starbucks was started in Seattle, Washington on March 30, 1971, by three partners who were students at the University of San Francisco. In 1987, the original owners of Starbucks sold the company to Howard D. Schultz, an American businessman who redesigned Starbucks and began the expansion of the company. In 1992, Starbucks Corporation filed its first Initial Public Offering (IPO)  and by September 1992 the share price of Starbucks had risen by 70%. The rest is history, with the company going on to become a worldwide chain.

Now that we understand the origin and operations of Starbucks, let’s dive into its marketing mix.

 

Marketing Mix of Starbucks

 

A company’s marketing mix is a series of actions, or techniques, that it employs to promote its brand or product in the marketplace. Price, Product, Promotion, and Place are the four Ps that make up a conventional marketing mix.

Let’s start with the first P of the Starbucks Marketing mix.

 

Product Strategy of Starbucks

The Product is the value offered by a brand to its customer.

Starbucks is a brand that is renowned for its premium quality coffee. It offers more than 1000 varieties of food items including coffee, smoothies, cookie, tea, muffins, pastries, doughnuts, fresh fruit juice, blended beverages and much more.

A Simple Coffee cup with the Handwritten name of the customer on it is the unique product design strategy of Starbucks which is a signature favourite among customers.

Starbucks commits to the “Barista Promise “ in which they make their coffee and drinks in the way that customers desire. Customers can request to customise drinks.

Thus, the product categories in which Starbucks deals are:

  1. Coffee
  2. Tea
  3. Baked Goods
  4. Frappuccino
  5. Smoothies
  6. Starbucks Merchandise (Mugs, Instant coffee etc)
  7. Other food items and beverages.

 

Price Strategy of Starbucks

The pricing of a product is a delicate decision that matters to consumers the most. The price of a product is set by keeping in mind the brand image and the demand for the product in the target market.

Starbucks adopts the Premium Pricing Strategy. The purpose behind this strategy is to cultivate a sense in the market that their product is superior to others.

Starbucks sells its products at high prices to their target audience.

The company satisfies its customers and justifies its prices by providing excellent service and ambience at its stores. 

Starbucks’ price strategy is focused on customer experience and product quality which also helps them stand out from the competition and thus becomes a status symbol for its customers.

 

Place Strategy of Starbucks

 

The place and distribution strategy is a component of the marketing mix that plays a vital role in the success of any business. The location where the business runs its operations is a crucial factor.

Starbucks’ place strategy has played a huge role in the success of the chain stores.  It has more than 30,000 stores in around 83 countries across the globe. Starbucks offers the maximum number of their products at their stores. However, they also have the following chains of distribution for their products.

  • Coffeehouses
  • Retailers
  • Mobile applications
  • Starbucks highly focuses on the design and environment of its coffeehouses where customers enjoy a premium experience. They open their stores at “it” places like Malls and Popular Markets.
  • Starbucks also sells their merchandise with different brands and retailers
  • The company also has an e-commerce presence integrated with e-payments. Customers can easily order their coffee from the Starbucks app and pick up their order from the store.

Starbucks in India also collaborates with food delivery partners like Swiggy and Zomato. Customers can order their coffee from these apps and get easy delivery at their homes.

 

Promotion Strategy of Starbucks

 

The promotional mix refers to the unique blend of advertising, sales promotion, public relations, social media, and e-commerce used to promote a product. The promotion strategy is a part of the marketing mix that refers to inform, persuade, or remind target audiences about a company’s products.

Starbucks promotes its products by the following mediums:

  • Advertising
  • Offline
  • Online
  • Social media
  • Sales promotions
  • Word of mouth marketing.
  • Starbucks promotes its products via both offline and online mediums of advertising.

It uses big banners for the promotion of its beverages and ongoing offers.

The Starbucks marketing team regularly runs different ad campaigns on online advertising media platforms like Google ads and Facebook ads. 

  • Starbucks is highly active on various social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat etc. The company promotes its products on each platform with very deliberately designed images and videos that easily connect with its audiences. It also provides many offers at its coffeehouses. They also issue discount coupons in collaboration with payment apps. All of these are sales promotion incentives.

Word of mouth marketing is the strategy in which your existing customers become the biggest promoters of your brand. Starbucks’ brand image helps immensely in this regard. By focusing on customer relationships and customer satisfaction, they have been able to successfully bank on consumers’ recommendations. The chain of recommendation from one customer to another is the strategy that boosts their sales organically.

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Conclusion

After taking a hard look at all 4Ps strategies of Starbucks, we conclude that the Starbucks Corporation is a successful chain of coffeehouses around the world that excels at its marketing. Starbucks has maintained its product quality and brand image efficiently over many years. It opens its stores at places that are engaging and attractive to its targeted audiences.

Starbucks maintains its unmatched presence via public relations through social media where they actively engage with their target audiences that are the best promoters of their brand. All in all, Starbucks surely has a well-rounded, all inclusive marketing mix that still continues to be perfected.

Did you like this blog? Are you interested in learning more? If you’re new to digital marketing, our Free Masterclass on Digital Marketing Basics is a great place to begin.

Please let us know what you think of this case study in the comments section below  Thank you for taking out your valuable time to read this blog, and if you liked it, please share it with your friends.

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]

Aditya Shastri

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