Friday, September 01, 2006

Too Much Viral Marketing At Starbucks

I will be thrilled when I hear a mobile marketing campaign got pulled because it had too much exposure.

From DM News Starbucks pulls marketing ad

Coffee giant Starbucks pulled an e-mail offering to its employees after distribution got out of hand.

The e-mail called "Try your coffee” offered customers a free Grande beverage between noon and 9 p.m. through Sept. 30. The small print directed customers to print the e-mail and present it to baristas.

It was distributed to a limited group of Starbucks partners and employees in Atlanta on Wednesday, Aug. 23, with instructions to forward to friends and family.

However, the e-mail spread faster than Starbucks predicted, landing in e-mail boxes coast to coast, as well as being sold on auction sites like eBay

This is the exact opposite effect their mobile marketing campaign is having. While I understand it is easier to send a dozen emails versus forwarding an SMS campaign, it still boils down to marketing.

Having lunch with a VC yesterday, he asked me "what is taking mobile marketing so long to kick in?"

The biggest reason.

Creativity, these mobile marketing campaigns lack it.These mobile marketing companies are still thinking like print and TV advertisers.

A perfect example is NBC's campaign.

OK so people get a chance to win $10k, but how do you interact with that person after the text is sent? Did NBC really need to charge people .99 per text for this?

Was the premise for this text campaign to make money or to open the door for advertisers?

Here's a better idea. Send a text to XXXX with keyword (DEALME) to be a contestant on the show. The show (or their advertiser) can continue to advertise to the texter until the show goes off the air. That's not THAT creative but it keeps the line open to communicate with the consumer. Isn't that the point of mobile marketing? Get permission to advertise and offer relevant info.

The Apprentice and other prime time shows are off the mark with their model.

This should be an exciting time for advertisers, but they still don't get it.
There are better ways of doing it.

Until these guys get past the "text and win" mentality, I think mobile marketing will continue to be a "next year" story.


Anonymous said...

PP, aren't you have any luck convincing these turkeys to take your advice?? You've got some great ideas! What's the problem?

Scott Shaffer said...

In spite of what some think, Visionary Innovations is NOT an eleemosynary institution.

Anonymous said...

Now that's being quite charitable, PP....LOL. :-)

Larry said...

Wow I had to look that one up.
Dont you think if you gave away a couple of ideas it might jump start not only Mobil Marketing but also Visionary Innovations if they are sucessful.

Dean Collins said...

Working for one of the hottest technologies in this space I can tell you that personally I think the issue is the propensity for Americans to consider everything is bigger and better in the "good ol US of A".

Without doubt Asia and Europe have far more penetration in the mobile marketing space and the lessons are there to be learnt by the US agencies about what works and what doesn't work simply by looking outside of the USA.

Traction Platform have built a formidable list of clients that have successfully used mixed digital marketing channels to be successful, but have yet to have a single US client use more than 1 or two channels here in the USA.

There was a great panel that I blogged about recently that shows current mainstream media isn't going to go away however these new channels do offer new and innovative functionality never before achievable as long as you are willing to be creative.

I for one, am always delighted by advertising/interactive agencies who push us to our technical limits and would welcome anyone on this blog who thinks they can utilise our world class technology to deliver creative campaigns.

Dean Collins

Oh and in case anyone thinks my descriptions are hyperbole and sales talk....don’t take my word for it, check out what Red Herring thinks of Traction Platform 

Just voted one of the hottest startups in Asia for 2006.

PDF Version Here