The holiday season is upon us, and businesses everywhere are gearing up sales and marketing campaigns to reap a harvest from the seasonal consumers’ huge spending spree. One company has found a way to use holiday packaging to add a brand asset to its already immensely popular drink menu -The Starbucks Red Cup campaign.
Each year since 1997, Starbucks has presented its Red Cup campaign to observe the holiday season and embrace the perfect Eggnog Latte, Peppermint Mocha, or Holiday Blend. The Holiday Red Cup design has changed over the years, but it always incorporates the company’s iconic and seductive Siren woodcut along with the bright red color emblematic of this season.
Scroll through most social media today and you’ll find delightfully composed images of manicured gardens, perfectly frothed lattes, and the effortlessly styled “shelfie”– a photo of your prized positions artfully arranged on a shelf-like surface – now almost as popular as the original “selfie”.
Images of color coordinated, purely decorative accents abound, and all those cumbersome necessities, television remotes, laundry in need of folding, and kids’ toys (sometimes the kids themselves) are strategically hidden away. It’s easy to get frustrated when our own reality isn’t so picture perfect. However, IKEA’s marketing strategy is bucking that trend.
In an article, Forbes recently compared the retail industry to the Grateful Dead in the 1980s. At that time, a band’s success was rooted in their ability to sell records. Concerts were merely a vehicle for pushing record sales. The Grateful Dead left that model behind; their music was free, and their fans were free to spend on concerts and merchandise. As Forbes says, “They realized that the product wasn’t the album, but the experience.”
In a similar way, retailers who are making an impression and boosting their brand loyalty among customers are those who understand that just pushing product isn’t enough anymore. Instead, customers want an experience, and they want retailers to make an impression that transcends the goods in their shopping carts.