The current market place is filled with a plethora of products each begging for the consumer’s attention. While corporations may have good products and services that they may want to sell to their customers, it is difficult for these customers to get to know of the existence of such products without marketing (Sirgy and Lee 377). Marketing therefore plays an important role in today’s economy, particularly in getting consumers to know of the products and services offered by companies.As a coffeehouse, Starbucks has knowledge of the importance of marketing, and has used several methods of digital marketing currently trending in marketing, as well as implemented trends in the mobile marketing scene.
One of the importance of marketing is its ability to get the word out of the products and services offered by a company (Sirgy and Lee 377). For Starbucks, its coffee, pastries and free Wi-Fi at the outlets are among products and services the company needs to tell the world. Marketing therefore allows potential buyers to know of the products and services offered by a company. Indeed, marketing promotes the company’s products and services, allowing the business a chance of discovery by prospective customers.
Marketing is additionally important in increasing business sales. The fact that consumers know of the products or services offered by a business help in prospective sales of what the company is offering to the consumers (Pelsmacker et al. 512). Moreover, through marketing, companies are able to build a brand name and recognition. This, a company may do through participation in community activities as well as offering superior products and services to its consumers, which help in establishing the brand name and the business reputation.
Given the importance of marketing, many organizations have adopted new digital marketing methods, the most popular among them being the use of social media. Social media is particularly popular as a marketing tool among companies given that it is free and effective as a method of marketing (Schulze, Scholer and Skiera 8). Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, Google+, Instagram and Pintrest are among the most popular of the social media marketing platforms used by companies. All these offer different marketing options, with Facebook allowing sharing and liking of photos and status updates, Twitter allowing users to send tweets of 140 characters, You Tube allowing users to upload, watch, share and comment on videos while Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest all allow users to share and like photos as well as post comments.
Many companies are using these as marketing tools, relying on consumers to share information on the company’s products and services to their circles of friends within the networks. Other companies such as Starbucks have their own social media sites (My Starbucks idea) where consumers post ideas on how to improve services in the company’s outlets. Through the My Starbucks idea site, Starbucks has been able to introduce new ideas in its outlets including free Wi-Fi (idea number 3), new coffee flavors (idea number 144), mobile payment in Drive Thrus (idea number 202) (Business Wire n.p.). As of 2013, the company (Starbucks) had received more than 150,000 ideas from its customers.
Even with companies going to social media marketing, mobile marketing is also picking up with Starbucks having developed a mobile app, which consumers can download on their smartphones and use it to earn stars through their digital Starbucks Card. This is a trend among many companies, which use mobile apps as marketing tools to keep in touch with their customers. At the same time, these companies send targeted advertisements to these customers through data the apps glean from the customers’ data traffic.
Business Wire. “Starbucks Celebrates Five-Year Anniversary of My Starbucks Idea.” Business Wire, 2013. Web. 12 Apr. 2015
De Pelsmacker, Patrick, et al. “Consumer Preferences for the Marketing of Ethically Labelled Coffee.” International Marketing Review 22.5 (2005): 512-30. ProQuest. 12 Apr. 2015
Schulze, Christian, Lisa Schöler, and Bernd Skiera.”Customizing Social Media Marketing.”MIT Sloan Management Review 56.2 (2015): 8-10. ProQuest. 12 Apr. 2015
Sirgy, M. J., and Dong-Jin Lee. “Well-being Marketing: An Ethical Business Philosophy for Consumer Goods Firms.” Journal of Business Ethics 77.4 (2008): 377-403. ProQuest. 12 Apr.