Case Study Of Starbucks: The Marketing Saga

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Starbucks: The Marketing Saga
MBA 205 Marketing EMBA Dubai 2014/2015
Group A3

Over four decades since its inception, Starbucks positioned itself among the world's top ranking brands as the company grew from being a small coffee shop based in Seattle to becoming an internationally renowned name. This study sheds light on some of the marketing schemes that were utilized in the development of the brand, the distribution strategy, the pricing plan, and the communication approach to portray the Starbucks' journey towards globalization.
1. The Starbucks Brand
Starbucks has been very successful, partly because of the triumph of its logo, symbol, and design. The elements of the logo are more central to the identity it reflects. Essentially,
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Products sold in stores are beverages, food, beverage-making equipment and accessories targeting the same segment of consumers. To support their strategy of increasing market share in existing or new markets , Starbucks has dramatically expanded the number of stores from 1996-2008 4 (Figure A). We can see that Starbucks growth of stores stopped and even declined during the 2008 recession; however, the pace picked up again in 2012. This channel represents a vertical marketing system. Company-operated stores are a Corporate VMS, where the ownership fully resides within Starbucks from manufacturing and distribution to consumer sale. In this model Starbucks has full control of the entire process to ensure the quality of the “Starbucks Experience” is optimal. They also own the operational costs, financial risks and logistical …show more content…
Up to that date, Starbucks had presence in Seattle, Chicago and Vancouver, Canada.
Starbucks opened its first non-North American store in 1996 in Tokyo. Reflecting on this early step in internationalizing the chain, Schultz notes:
“They [blue-chip consulting firm] said we would not succeed in Japan. There were a number of things they told us to change. …Well, our no-smoking policy made us an oasis in Japan. As for our to-go business, you can't walk down a street in Tokyo today and not see someone holding a cup of Starbucks coffee. And our store size in Japan is identical to our store size in the U.S., about 1,200 to 1,500 square feet. It just shows the power of believing in what you do. And also that Starbucks is as relevant in Tokyo, Madrid, or Berlin as it is in Seattle”.

Based on the success in Japan and other locations, Schultz soon realized there was a significant potential for the company to grow overseas and to accelerate that growth, so he was determined to maintain a leadership position and a ubiquitous image as one of the most respected brands in the

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