Store closures aren’t enough to help Starbucks (SBUX). The coffee chain is realising that in this economy, more consumers are willing to grab a cup from Dunkin doughnuts, the corner store or, gasp, even the office coffee pot that’s been sitting there for two hours (it’s free, after all). So the company is, at least temporarily, giving up any pretensions of being elite:
WSJ: On Monday, the company plans to announce that it’s selling discounted pairings of coffee and breakfast food for $3.95, a type of promotion long used at fast-food chains. It’s the first move in an aggressive campaign to counter the widespread perception that Starbucks is the home of the $4 cup of coffee.
The Seattle-based company is training its baristas to tell customers that the average price of a Starbucks beverage is less than $3, and that 90% of Starbucks drinks cost under $4.
Hopefully they can do that gracefully. Something seems really awkward about baristas reminding people that 90% of drinks cost under $4.
Meanwhile, another robust competitor, McDonalds (MCD) reports January sales today.