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Posts Tagged ‘Starbucks’

More Clients Want You to Help Them Avoid Paying Taxes

shutterstock_140263030This weekend, The New York Times told us that Europe is moving to close many of the tax loopholes that have attracted so many corporations to The Netherlands even when they have no interest in hemp or socialism.

This is bad news for Starbucks…and great news for financially-focused PR firms.

NYT notes that both the coffee behemoth and the notoriously regulation-averse Apple have signed with RLM Finsbury and its lobbying affiliates in recent years to help more effectively minimize their total tax bills.

The real product being sold here is expertise on international tax policies and those ever-shifting loopholes; one year you establish a tax shelter in Ireland, but next year who knows?

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Mediabistro Job Fair

Mediabistro Job FairLand your next big gig! Join us on January 27 at the Altman Building in New York City for an incredible opportunity to meet with hiring managers from the top New York media companies, network with other professionals and industry leaders, and land your next job. Register now!

What Will Starbucks ‘Express’ Stores Mean for the Brand’s Culture?

I24905278_BG1f you’re addicted to your morning cup of Starbucks but are sick of waiting in long lines of giggling tweens ordering ten-word-long beverages before homeroom, the cafe chain has some good news for you.

In an effort to cater to busy commuters, the company plans to launch smaller, express-style stores with reduced menu items, mobile ordering, and digital payment systems, all with the aim of getting you on your way faster. This move comes as the coffee chain looks to further strengthen its already-successful drive-through stores, which make up about 40% of its US locations and already have a higher sales growth than its stores without drive-through windows.

Starbucks also plans to open at least 100 new stores in the next five years dedicated solely to its Starbucks Reserve small-batch arabica coffee line.

But if you don’t have to wade through a sea of aspiring novelists typing furiously on their iPads or listen to the Dr. Seuss-esque tongue twisters that are the epitome of drink orders, then are you really part of the Starbucks culture?

Well, in a word, yes; you’re just part of the other Starbucks culture. Read more

Durex on Rumored ‘Pumpkin Spice’ Condom: No Comment

Happy Monday! It’s now unofficially Fall, which means you’ll see the word “pumpkin” trotted out even more often than the phrase “Apple product launch” this month.

Brands like Starbucks do not seem to have heeded the “enough with the pumpkin stuff!” warning; as friend of the site Dave Armon of Critical Mention wrote in one of those rare comments worth reading:

“Like it or not, Starbucks is killing it with this story. We spotted 75 airings on U.S. TV and radio stations today, through 5:45 p.m. ET. Personally, I’ll wait until I can see my breath before ordering anything pumpkin flavored.”

This point goes a long way toward explaining why Durex and its PR AOR Virgo Health refused to give Quartz a definitive answer on the most absurd trend to emerge from Twitter this weekend:

If it’s real, the client wins. If it’s fake, the client still wins. Why stop the world from wondering?

For the record, we’re leaning strongly toward fake and 100% unearned.

UPDATE: Yes, everyone was right. Durex’s statement to BuzzFeed:

“We can’t claim this one, but we do love it when people spice it up in the bedroom.”

See why they waited, though?

Best Interview Ever: Starbucks’ CEO Schultz Talks About ASU College Partnership With Jon Stewart

starbucks cupIt’s not too often that The Daily Show invites a corporate leader to sit in the special guest chair opposite Jon Stewart. Usually it’s political activists and elected officials, authors and thinkers, or actors and directors. Last night, Howard Schultz, the CEO and chairman of Starbucksmade an appearance on the program. And he opened with the big news of the day (hey, it was on our Ticker!): Starbucks will be offering a free college education to its employees.

Through a partnership with the *Arizona State University, the company will give workers seeking a Bachelor’s degree the opportunity to pursue one, tuition-free, through online courses. He could barely get the words out and the audience was cheering.

“It is my job to hate everything. I’m having a really hard time with this one,” Stewart replied. “This sounds really lovely.” A talk show appearance – particularly one with Jon Stewart – doesn’t get much better than that.

Schultz said this is an opportunity for his company to tackle the issue of student indebtedness and help workers achieve something they wouldn’t otherwise be able to get on their own. And waiting on Washington is a waste of time.

“We’ve got to step up as we have in the past and show true leadership,” Schultz continued.

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Starbucks Partners with Duracell to Introduce Wireless Charging Stations

I1402518899000-XXX-San-Jose-2f you’re accustomed to working on your tablet for hours on end at your local Starbucks, but hate crawling surreptitiously underneath strangers’ chairs to access one of the few electrical outlets when your battery dies, the coffee chain’s new partnership with Duracell Powermat was made with you in mind.

Thanks to the scheduled rollout of wireless charging stations, it will soon be even easier for you to stick around and buy that second cup of overpriced coffee without worrying that your device will crap out on you and you’ll actually have to read a book or make conversation (heaven forbid).

The rollout will begin with stores in the San Francisco Bay Area, where customers will be able to simply set their devices down on certain parts of their tabletops to charge them. The company plans to install more that 100,000 such charging stations at Starbucks locations nationwide over the course of the next three years (that’s roughly a dozen per store). Read more

Chipotle Bans Guns at Restaurants After ‘Open Carry’ Demonstration in Texas

1311973338-chipotle-logoRemember when gun enthusiasts celebrated a heavily-armed “Starbucks Appreciation Day” to thank the coffee chain for defaulting to local gun laws (including “open carry” regulations), resulting in the company banning firearms from all of its locations to separate itself from the highly-political kerfuffle?

Well, if being barred from polishing your colt 45 while sipping on a latte at your local Starbucks disappointed you, you’ll be devastated to learn that if you were hoping to brandish an assault rifle while enjoying your next Chipotle burrito, you’ll now officially have to order it to go.

The new policy banning guns from all Chipotle locations comes after participants in an “open carry” demonstration brought guns — including assault rifles — into one of Chipotle’s Texas stores. The spectacle (for some reason) made customers rather uncomfortable, and also launched the fast food chain into the center of a hotly-debated issue — neither of which the company particularly appreciated. Read more

The 5 Most Socially Engaged Restaurant Brands

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Today we stumbled across the Restaurant Social Media Index, a three-year-old research tool measuring the performance of various restaurant brands on social media.

We were first drawn to this list of names with the greatest audience engagement levels; we found it particularly relevant considering the fact that most of its entries are fast food chains and salty, fatty fare is always popular on Super Bowl weekend.

So we figured we’d explore the top five on the list of 25 and find some examples of this all-important “engagement.”

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Edelman Appoints New Head of Chicago Office

2756a9891d9fecb8e56ba61b7893dfa8In yet another revolving door announcement, Edelman named Jay Porter as the new president of its inaugural Chicago office.

Porter was most recently executive vice president and global client relationship manager for Starbucks; he’ll replace Rick Murray, who’s moving on to other endeavors, and report to U.S. president/CEO Mark Haas.

This won’t be Porter’s first stint with the firm: from 2005-2012 he alternately served as the Seattle Consumer practice, manager of the Axe account and EVP/general manager of the San Francisco office before taking over the Starbucks account.

Edelman’s made a few changes since announcing its 2014 “Show Up Differently” initiative; we’ll report on future updates.

Starbucks Gets Frap-Slapped by Missouri Pub Owner

Sucks Coffee StarbucksSometimes, I think I should be one of the Occupy Wall Street folks. And then I remember I much I love to bathe and exercise proper oral hygiene and move on to something on TV. Corporate folk so easily forget the times when they struggled, so when “the little guy” gets one over on them, I secretly jump for joy … and publicly come here to relish in the afterglow.

You may be familiar with Starbucks? In their overused, cutsy lingo, the eff word is not what you think a barista says when he or she can’t remember one of those ridiculous hipster diatribe orders in the drive-thru. No, the eff word in question is “Frappuccino.”

However, thanks to this genius move by a pub owner in Missouri, Starbucks may actually be using the other word you were thinking.

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Top 10 Social Media Wins of 2013

Next round of likes is on us

The next round of “likes” is on us…

We already shared the worst of social media in 2013, so here’s to the best…or at least our own approximation of it.

OBVIOUS DISCLAIMER IS OBVIOUS: Yes, this list is highly subjective and you’re going to see some repetition/glaring omissions. But such is the nature of year-end clickbait, no?

Here, then, are the stories that demonstrated what social media meant to us and our industry in 2013.

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