"In Seattle you haven't had enough coffee until you
can thread a sewing machine while it's running."
-- Jeff Bezos
Starbuck's just turned 40. Who would have figured? As a late Starbuck's advocate (approximately 5 years ago), I was amazed to hear they are 40 years old. Their humble beginnings obviously lasted longer than their meteoric rise to stardom.
Some like to say, "it's not about the coffee. . .", and of course it is really, but it's not, is it? Well, I love the coffee, and I've had Peet's and many other coffee names, and they are all good. So, I love Starbuck's coffee, and I don't love it more than I love the Folger's or Hills Bros. I drink at home; however, except in the morning at home, I wouldn't go out of my way for the stuff at home, but I certainly do for Starbuck's. Maybe I do love it more. . . nah.
I agree that it isn't about the coffee. What Starbuck's did was create an environment to which coffee was a separate and welcome delight. It is indeed the experience that is what I see as Starbuck's success. When it comes to that experience, except for a few locations where the music is just a tad too loud, it is superior.
I go there for coffee, but in the last three years, it has become an offsite meeting room, Internet cafe, and half hour to an hour respite from the hustle bustle of the world. It is a treat. I love stopping in for my usual Grande Latte, while I enjoy reading on my Kindle or checking email. It has become a consistent meeting place and everyone seems to know where the Starbuck's are in their town or city. It's easy and efficient. The Wi-Fi is easy and helps make fast work of using the Internet for a few minutes.
And, Starbuck's is yet more. It is a learning experience to watch it's growth, and how they do things. Take that information and apply it to your own business. It will apply pretty much anywhere. Think about a car dealership, for example. It's not about the cars, it is the experience. It is isn't it? It is what makes the difference. It's not the price either. Starbuck's isn't cheap, but successful seems too calm a term to use. I think there are so many ways to compare what Starbuck's has done and have it applied and benefit our personal lives and our business lives.
It's The Consistent Experience. . .
Spread Some Joy Today--try loving those cranky, impatient people in line. . . it takes some extra love sometimes, but worth it. It's the experience.