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Friday, April 10, 2009

Down Goes Starbucks

I met a friend at a nearby Starbucks yesterday and found some interesting things.  Here are the reasons I believe they are struggling still struggling right now as a company.  I know they've made moves to save the brand but it seems to be backfiring due to making the wrong moves.  This is my take and I'd love to hear yours.

  • Locations Closing - I know this was to shrink overhead, but seems to have created a list of other probems.
  1. Crowding - It was a slightly chilly morning in Oklahoma City and we were forced to sit outside due to absolutely zero free seats in the place.  When there was a neighborhood location on every corner, this wasn't a problem.  Once many of the city-wide locations closed, overcrowding occurred.  The locations left should have had a remodeling project to take in more clients.  Individual places crowded but companywide locations slowing.
  2. Atmosphere - Let's face it.  People didn't fall in love with SB because they couldn't get their product elsewhere.  It was because they provided an experience of a laid back, upscale environment for $5.  That has turned into a loud bustling crowded chaos cooker.
  3. Convenience - Having a neighborhood SB was convenient but now many people must pass several SB competitors to find a SB.
  • wifi - Why ask clients to pay for this?  It's too cheap and I can get it anyplace else in town for free.  I consistently meet clients at other locations who fall in love with their locally owned jewels.
  • Local Coffee Cafe's - Individually owned local brands are popping up in the neighborhoods vacated by SB that are offering all of the things SB no longer does.
Where do you get your brew?



Brannon said...

Honestly, I've never "gotten" the SB mystique. I don't like coffee, so that's a negative right off the top. Their hot choc is really good, but too expensive. Run by 7-11, come to my house, I'll make Swiss Miss, and we'll have a much better conversation.

jabberfrog said...

I get my brew from my home coffee maker. I used to stop multiple times per week, now I'll stop once every few weeks for a cup. Though I love SB, the few locations in my area are crowded. I prefer to have never known SB as convenient. They changed my paradigm and changed my expectation. That's difficult to recover from.

Cari said...

I make mine at home, too. Complete with special creamers and some whip cream from the can to squirt on top. A fraction of the cost and the atmosphere at home can't be beat!

JC Riley said...

Brannon - We do have some good convo over there. Or at least I do and you at least are nice enough to put up with me :)

jabberfrog - When not meeting at a location for business, I prefer home too. You're absolutely right, If I'd not ever known the old SB, I might not mind but they once gave me great and total experience and now ask me to settle for average.

Cari - Best thing about home is not having the 50cent up charge for every little thing. I get to add all the fixin's at home.