Monday, November 26, 2007

“Pass the Cheer” Starbucks TV Ad

Thought I’d share a posting from another blog I enjoy, Brand Autopsy. Let’s ask our neighbors across the street what they think.

“Lots of c-h-a-t-t-e-r about the television spots Starbucks is running. I haven't seen them on the tele, but Starbucks has posted one spot online.

“Hmm ... okay. Starbucks waited 36-years for this? It's nice. It's benign. It's subtle. Can't see how this spot will drive in new customers, nor drive current customers to come in more often during the Holidays. (And yeah, I know this is just one component to the overall Starbucks Holiday promotion.)

“The missing ingredient of Starbucks first national television commercial is brand identity. This spot feels more appropriate for Caribou Coffee than it does Starbucks.

“Caribou's brand identity is wrapped around the cozy ski lodge concept as well as the leaping deer in its logo. The in-store décor of a Caribou Coffee location is reminiscent of a ski lodge, complete with exposed weathered wood and comfy chairs around a fireplace. The leaping deer, which easily passes for a reindeer during the Holidays, is as iconic to Caribou as the Siren is to Starbucks.

“Additionally, Caribou uses a pastel aqua-blue color as part of its brand identity.
So upon further review, this commercial from Starbucks works better for Caribou Coffee than it does for Starbucks. Ski scenes are more associated with Caribou than Starbucks. A deer is more linked to the Caribou brand than the Starbucks brand. Caribou’s color scheme has always been drenched in an aqua-blue color, while Starbucks color scheme hasn’t.

“Upon even further review, this Starbucks commercial fails the “Logo Test.” If we were to swap out the Starbucks Christmas Blend bag at the end of the spot and replace it with Caribou’s Reindeer Blend, the commercial would still work just fine. Anytime you can swap out your logo for a competitor’s logo in any piece of marketing collateral and it looks fine, you have a problem.

“So ... Starbucks, with its first national television commercial, has made a great ad for Caribou Coffee.”

What's your take? Does this television ad make you feel any different about Starbucks? Does it make you want to visit a Starbucks and buy some Christmas Blend?


Jenny said...

I thought the same thing when I first saw the commercial; however, because I have been in a Starbucks recently and got a coupon for "pass the cheer," I recognized it as Starbucks. I wouldn't have if I didn't already have the coupon.

Patrick said...

This really looks watered down to me... probably with a lot of their Ethos water. I give them some credit for trying to do something a little different and telling the story without a pushy voice over. However the characters look really sad to me for some reason. Maybe this is a better horshack test than a seasonal product promotion.