Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hey, Starbucks! Here's where to look for ideas

So how obvious was it that Wieden + Kennedy and Starbucks were going to part ways? The only surprise for me is that apparently they've had a relationship with one another for four years, and with the brand asking Wieden and other agencies for ideas to move the brand forward, I can see it being time for Wieden to start walking in the other direction. The beginning of the end for me came last year, when Wieden started to actually do TV advertising for Starbucks, which, not at all coincidentally, is when TV advertising for Starbucks jumped the shark. It's not that the ads were bad (check out one above); it's just that they were completely superfluous. Starbucks is so well-established in the national psyche as a brand, and more importantly, as an experience, that it's impossible to impose an image-driven campaign upon the brand. A much better idea is MyStarbucksIdea.com where the Starbucks universe can share, discuss and vote on ideas to improve the company--and Starbucks actually implements some of them. Let's hope Starbucks continues to plough its resources into that instead of advertising. If Starbucks is really looking for ideas to move the brand forward, that's where they are.

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