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notoriety and a large loyal consumer base to begin with. The brand and the company’s position was gained by and achieved through providing an atmosphere and an environment where people can gather, socialize, relax, and interact with each other in a very unique environment (Ferrell, Hartline, 2018). Every facet of the company from the employees to the furniture playedan important role in providing the customers with this particular atmosphere (Ferrell, Hartline, 2018). Due to the rapid expansion, Starbucks lost sight of what was actually bringing in customers which drastically impacted their brand positioning (Barnes, 2008). Essentially, Starbucks is becoming a mass brand that is trying to make customers pay premium prices for an atmosphere and experience that is no longer the same as it used to be (Silverthorne, 2008). It seems obvious that Starbucks either needs to cut prices to deal with the competition, or they need to take a step back and refocus their brand to get back to the “third place” mentality and what gave them success in the first place (Silverthorne, 2008).In the short-term, there are several things that could have the company get back on track. First off, I would remove the drive-thru option. This is one of the biggest decisions that drastically impacted their competitive advantage. Removing the drive-thru would take the company out of the fast-food competition market and back into the specialized coffee shop market which is one of the most important first steps. The next steps that should be taken should be centered around the employees and the customers. Coming up with promotions for
the customers to promote customer loyalty would be a great way to start cultivating their loyal consumer base that they once had (Ferrell, Hartline, 2018). It is also important to make sure the employees are satisfied and trained properly to promote the ideas and atmosphere that thecompany wants to obtain. Increased focus on employees satisfaction and training would allow the employees to better take care of the business as well as the customers. For the long-run, there are also several idea that could help Starbucks reinvigorate their brand. The first two big idea that come to mind, especially this day and age, are an increased focus on sustainability initiatives which will help the environment while also gaining notoriety for the brand, and even more community based initiatives to help reach out and give aid to the communities that need more help. Another process that has already begun a little is more of a global outreach presence and just more of a global presence in general. Helping overseas while instilling the mentality that the company was founded on is another way to reinvigorate the brand. If Starbucks takes these steps while keeping the “third place” values in mind, then they will be able to regain their top brand position and get back to where they once were.