Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Starbucks Reminds Brands to Innovate or Die

Starbucks latest news about its delivery service may seem odd to anyone familiar with the brand's brick and mortar ubiquity. At last count, Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world, with 20,891 stores in 64 countries -- 13,279 in the United States alone.
But investors are quick to remind any brand that ubiquity is a temporary state - a journey and not a destination. Starbucks has to keep growing...its profits. So its delivery service concept is among a few new initiatives to help the Moby Dick-inspired brand keep moving forward.
Innovate or Die
The brand's size lends itself to challenges and opportunities when it comes to marketing innovation. At my employer's annual client event, author Andrew Razeghiwalked through steps brands can take to innovate, including thinking about innovation more broadly.

A variety of approaches can lead to innovation, Razeghi notes.
Focusing on what you do (the product or service) usually gets the most time and attention. However expanding this focus to consider HOW you do it is equally important to get customers to choose you. 
And that's exactly what Starbucks did. After enough growth to fuel a joke about "a Starbucks on every corner," the brand asked how else it might serve their customers. Changing how they do it, no matter how unintuitive, is how Starbucks is looking to innovate next.
So look at your brand's products and services and think more broadly about innovation. Focusing on how partnerships, your offering, your operations or the customer might help you achieve a new point of difference.

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