Starbucks, as a foreign brand, wanted to foster a deeper connection with consumers in China around the Chinese New Year holiday. Traditionally, Chinese calendars guide the lives of the Chinese by predicting auspicious dates for weddings, travel, house-moving and other events. For example, 27 January this year was deemed a good day to go on a blind date, while 11 February was considered a good day to visit relatives.
Starbucks, through JWT, created its own 30-day calendar tailored to the journeys and daily experiences of a typical Chinese citizen during February. The content was seeded on social media, as the client rarely uses paid media. The calendar dates were linked to physical store offers.
On 3 February, for example, consumers were asked to give their parents bear hugs at stores in order to get a three-for-two deal. On 7 February, consumers were asked to display their New Year shopping at stores to get a free beverage upgrade. Other examples included limited-edition reward cards for consumers who posted pictures of themselves toasting friends on social media.
With almost-zero media investment, the 'daily goodness' campaign generated more than 100 million impressions on Sina Weibo. Sales from the festive promotion performed 10 times better than during regular-period promotions, according to the company.