Starbucks is launching a major marketing campaign for its new instant coffee, Via. A major part of the roll out is a huge taste test throughout their 7,500 cafes in the US and Canada.
One possible problem with this introduction, though, is how it impacts the Starbucks brand position. Starbucks became successful by selling an experience and an image. Otherwise, why pay so much money for a product that can be gotten elsewhere for much less? Now, though, Starbucks is starting a huge campaign to convince people that they can't taste the difference between a fresh-brewed coffee in one of their cafes and some powder added to hot water. The more successful the campaign, the more Starbucks will convince people that there is no need to return to their cafes.