Creating the Starbucks Experience

Starbucks is known for its coffee varieties and has established its Brand name especially throughout U.S.

The Starbucks experience is a combination of the product, the place of the location the people and the brand. The company has always looked at new avenues for reaching out to the customers. In the mid 1970s it had started serving customers by mail wherein a simple brochure listings its product offerings was mailed to the customers. In 1988, it developed the first catalogue and began expanding the mil order base to targeted demographic groups. In 1990 it invested in a toll free number to encourage customer interaction.

The product

At Starbucks the experience of a perfect cup of coffee starts with finding and purchasing the best green beans in the world and this is the first step that differentiates Starbucks Coffee from the rest of the coffee industry. Each coffee is selected for the defining qualities that distinguish its origin. This careful selection process illustrates Starbucks passion for buying and roasting the world’s best coffee.

The coffee buying team evaluates over one thousand offer samples each year. The evaluation process includes roasting small batches of coffee and tasting these batches in a process called cupping. Only a very few of these sampled coffees make it into our warehouses. Starbucks coffee buyers spend approximately 18 weeks per year, traveling to countries of origin. The purpose of these travels is not directly buying coffee. The goal is to continue to learn about coffee and to strengthen relationships with growers and suppliers. These relationships are critical to our future success – they solidify our role as champions of quality and progress at every level of the coffee business. It is because of these relationships that Starbucks gets the first pick of the best crops worldwide.

A large part of its success has remained in not tampering with the basic product offering but creating and adapting to the new marketplaces that to enters. Initially the company focused on selling Starbucks coffee only in a Starbucks store. However, the opportunity to attract new customers was too appealing to give up. The first big concession was at the O’Hare airport at Chicago. In 1991, the company finally signed a licensing agreement with Host Marriott for airport locations.

In 1994, the company invented Frapuccino, an idea that percolated from the store level and signed a far reaching joint venture with Pepsi. In 1994 another idea took Starbucks in anew direction which the company had never imagined before — the music business. This not only helped boost sales but also created an image of company which could continue to surprise.

After it ventured in Asia it has strived to create products which cater to local needs. One such offering was Starbucks. Discoveries which are sold in the refrigerated section of convenience stores. According to the company, Starbucks Discoveries is made fresh and is kept refrigerated with a short, 14 day shelf life, one of the shortest on the market today. Additionally, during consumer research, most Starbucks customers in Asia believed that chilled cup coffee was the best way for Starbucks to enter the market outside of their retail stores. This launch of Starbucks Discoveries represents Starbucks first entry in to the chilled cup coffee segment anywhere in the world. The Company took more than a year to create a super premium ready to drink coffee, designed to appeal to the local taste preferences in Asia, using the same high quality coffee found in all Starbucks retail stores and coffee based products worldwide.