I love this. Starbuck's tweet-a-coffee/#! I love it for so many reasons....first and foremost because it's a great example of giving fuzz factor to the cold, hard internet AND because it bridges two worlds beautifully - PR and promotion.
I will admit that I am not a Starbucks groupie, and while I enjoy their brand, if I had my choice, I would probably select another cup a 'joe first. However...
I love that they are trying this (in beta), and have found a way to "be" more giving and thoughtful "by way of" their customers. The friend gets the coffee, customer gets the thanks, but THEY get the residual perception and glory.
For a PR person, you can't say more about 'living a brand' than using a coffee shop (a stand alone location) as the means of evoking; involuntary response, (surprise as they open the tweet), emotion (thank you!) and action (walking into shop to obtain gift and hopefully purchase more). It is the epitome of 'giveaways' AND they don't have to give anything away. It's more than marketing and promotion - this is Emotion in the palm of your customer's hand.... am I being over zealous? ...perhaps.
What does this mean for me as the PR person? It clearly puts social media strategy into a new light and gets PR people thinking outside of the 140 character box.
PR is about eliciting a response which inspires action - in the past we've relied on communications, media, events, media interviews - even the odd PR stunt in downtown rush hour. But let's always be challenging ourselves on how we can make change and change perception using these 'ego-centric' and often self-satisfying social channels.
I love the possibilities - I will work to stretch beyond the walls of social media for my own clients also. Bottoms up!
Can you tell I love this sT@**?
- Tweet-a-Coffee: You can now buy a Starbucks latte for a friend via Twitter (geekwire.com)
- Marketers Loving Social Media, PR Lags (sysomos.com)