When Starbucks marketers drink the non-fat, mochachino kool-aid .

starbucks player

Q. What’s the difference between a salesman and a marketer?
Salesmen know when they are lying.

{Full disclosure: I love Starbucks, I go there quite often. I just find it silly when people take themselves too seriously.}

Caleb Hannon wrote a recent article in the Daily Weekly that  concluded with directions on how to “cleanse yourself of the stench of Pfeiffer’s corporate-speak.” I’m not sure if the self-important proclamations he refers to are quite this egregious but you have to admit that Pfeiffer and many other marketers do tend to take themselves a bit too seriously.

Starbucks is opening new custom designed stores that attempt to blend in with their local environments. That’s it. Unfortunately that sound bite would only last for a few seconds so Tim Pfeiffer, Starbucks VP of Global Magnificence felt he needed to fill that void with over three minutes of Starbucks marketing dribble.

The following is a guide to help you better understand what Starbucks is trying to say in this video:

“Cafe Presence” – A store.
“Open the Throat”
– I believe he is either referring to an in-store tracheotomy procedure or perhaps this is a euphemism for increasing cut throat business practices… not sure which.
“Major Coffee Theatre”
– A clear indication that everything he and the company does and says is an act, they don’t really mean any of it.
“Elevate the offering”
– The religious connotations are self-evident here.
“More bespoke and one-off”
–  ‘Mcdonald’s started building customized/localized stores a while back so we thought we’d copy that idea.’
“Availability of the interaction of the Barrista”
… I got nothing here. It’s English (and he’s a marketer), so he was probably trying to make a point about something.
“The go-forward”
– All marketing men of action are legally required to include ‘go-forward’ at least once in a conversation.
“Great coffee messaging”
– Ads.
“Our coffee authority” – Starbucks will continue to crush all competition (in an environmentally responsible fashion.)

So Tim, keep up the good work… but get over yourself, it’s just coffee.

One Response

  1. Hey Jimm, I like that you hold nothing back (in terms of your opinion and thoughts). You don’t care what Starbucks, or people who enjoy Starbucks, might think. While I actually do enjoy a nice coffee drink myself, I can totally respect your honest personality and voice in your writing.

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