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Starbucks speaks CSR to sweet tooth

Starbucks-frappachino by Amanda Ponzar @LivingUnited


Last time I checked my Starbucks gold card balance online, I was two stars away from another free drink.  Every transaction = star. 15 stars = free drink.


When I’m in Starbucks, I feel GOOD. Granted, it could be the frappachino talking. The venti java chip or coffee frappucchino light with chocolate drizzle to be exact. I’m cuckoo for cocoa puffs enough to pay Starbucks $5+ for a beverage, but it’s more than just the sugar rush. It’s also Starbucks’ savvy marketing and corporate responsibility.


When I go to Starbucks:

· The pastry display signage, crinkly brown bag and napkin all tell me Starbucks doesn’t use trans fats, artificial flavors or high-fructose corn syrup in their multigrain bagel (me on a good day) or classic glazed doughnut (naughty day). Starbuckscup

· My cup holder tells me it’s made of recycled materials.


· The cup itself says “YOU. Are a pioneer in using recycled cups. Everything we do, you do.”

When it comes to recycling, Starbucks is in it to win it. They give free 5lb bags of used coffee grounds for your compost pile. Starbucks even held a Cup Summit to create a better recyclable cup. 


According to cause marketing authority Cone, more than two-thirds of people consider a company’s business practices when deciding what to buy. And 85 percent of people expect companies to make and sell environmentally responsible products and services during the economic downturn.


Starbucks’ website tells the rest of the story, from community support to volunteering to Product Red HIV support to ethical sourcing to improve livelihoods around the world. 


What this all brews down to is a brand that speaks corporate responsibility to consumers, while serving addictive, chocolaty, caffeinated beverages. What’s not to like?


So, what is YOUR brand (business or personal) saying about you?


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Lisa Ursano

This is a great re-cap of some of the good that Starbucks is doing! I'm a loyal Gold card holder, and really appreciate the communication, rewards and quality products they offer their customers. Here's hoping more people see beyond the big corporate status and see the great efforts being made at the local and community levels as well.
Great blog!

Debra Mennins

Since Starbucks is a trusted brand, its good to know and experience their eco-initiatives. Even if my coffee stained teeth drive my cosmetic dentist los angeles insane, this is a company that I know I'll be buying from.

dentist Woollahra dental veneers

I love how Starbucks is stepping up the initiative. I may have to visit my dentist more often, but I love that my coffee place is doing its bit for the environment.

Dentist Essendon

I always thought Starbucks was too commercial. but now I see Starbucks in a new way. Glad that they care for the environment.


This is such a great way to build an interactive brand!

Thanks for the blog post Amanda!


Very interesting - you definitely made me see Starbucks in a whole new light! PSA - some online discounts for those who like to load up their Starbucks cards online:

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