For friends and family who live in the states, this may or may not be a big deal. Some people love Starbucks. Some people just don’t get it. I would love to review a case-study on WHY people like it so much. I am sure there has been one done.
Regardless of what side of the fence you are on, I happen to really enjoy Starbucks. I can remember the first time I went to Starbucks. Nick and I were living in Monterey, CA. We went to San Jose to see a show. (We were young and were trying to add some culture into our lives, and the theater up there was outstanding.) We stopped for a Starbucks coffee when we were up there, and we didn’t know how or what to order. Nick told the barista that this was his first Starbucks experience, and she asked him what rock he lived under. He refused to order by their terms, and he ordered a medium Frappuccino instead of a “Grande”. Almost twenty years later, he knows their sizes, and he still orders in Small, Medium, or Large. He also still loves Frappuccinos.
I have my favorite drinks, and I only order hot drinks. (If I order cold ones, I will drink them too quickly.) Now, the rock I have been living under is the “collections-of-Starbucks-cups” rock. Collecting these mugs is a whole thing, and it’s a thing that I still haven’t figured out (kind of like my guy with the drink sizes). When I was traveling, my friends were picking up mugs from all over the world. They found them in places like India and Kuala Lumpur. We actually took detours to get to a Starbucks – not for a nice latte – but for a mug. I was confused but played along.
Recently, my sister impulsively bought two Starbucks tumblers. I think she must have been a little stressed about something because her impulse buying is usually tied to something else that is completely unrelated. She took her tumblers home, and after the stress subsided, I think she realized that she didn’t need two tumblers after all. They were pretty, but they were completely unnecessary. She had two choices; she could take them back, or she could give them away. She opted for the latter. Over-priced tumblers felt like such a splurge to her, but if she gave them away, they would feel like such a gift to someone else, so A GIVE-AWAY sounded perfect.
In order to be considered for the tumbler give-away, her shoppers had to purchase something starting on Black Friday and could shop until Sunday to be considered for the drawing. That weekend there were sales for EVERYONE and SOMETHING for EVERYONE. She had earrings that were brand new and cost as low as $2. My favorites were all in the $4 range. She also sold shoes, clothing, and handbags. After the weekend, she did her drawing and two lucky shoppers each won a tumbler. It was so exciting. I was excited, and I didn’t win, but just being a part of it was fun!
Fast forward and Across the Ocean
I asked my sister if I could donate a Starbucks cup for a giveaway. Sophia was all about it, so Sunday, Suijin and I got in the car and went for a ride. In most cities, you can get to a Starbucks in within five to ten minutes. From where I live, I have to drive thirty-five to forty-five minutes to get to the closest Starbucks. (The extra ten minutes is based on whether or not they are doing construction.) Going to Starbucks is kind of like going on a short road trip. Fortunately, the views are beautiful, and I love podcasts. I needed a break from studying, so the dog and I headed north to find a cute cup. I actually chose to go north because the drive is prettier and the Starbucks up in Motobu is better. I figured that it would give me a better selection. I had to drive an extra ten minutes each way, but it was totally worth the 50-minute-each-way-drive.
I loved the art at the Starbucks in Motobu.
I found a cup, sent a picture to my sister, got an approval, and bought myself a coffee while I was up there. (I am not driving almost two hours without some delicious caffeine for the drive home.) On the way home, I thought about the cup and why I wanted to do it for her. I think more than anything, I just want her to feel supported. Being a solopreneur is a lonely job. I am also curious to see if people will be excited to get a cup from Japan. I don’t get the Starbucks cup thing, but obviously people love them. I want her business to be successful, and I want someone to be excited about winning an over-priced cup. After my short road trip, I made it home and returned to the studying. The two-hour break had done me some good, so I will call this a win-win. I am also super excited to see who the lucky winner will be!
The pink cup from Okinawa, Japan.
If you are not in her Facebook shopping group, I encourage you to check it out! https://www.facebook.com/groups/1465317460307812/posts/2133906213448930/