Today’s post will explore the success of Starbucks and Netflix on the Internet, particularly with Social Media. It will explore why Starbucks puts so much emphasis on social media like Facebook and Twitter and how these sites compare to their homegrown site. The question for Netflix is whether or not the Cinematch search tool is responsible for NetFlix’s success as a business or is it due to them moving to total streaming of movies and TV shows that created their success?
Starbucks, according to some people, makes great coffee. Their staffs of baristas are friendly, and their stores located just about everywhere in America. They even have stores in China. They’re known for their killer social media strategy (Huff, 2014).
Here are some of the stats:
● 36 million Facebook likes
● 12 million Twitter followers
● 93K YouTube subscribers
Those numbers are very impressive. There’s no doubt Starbucks is big on social media, but, why do they do it? Starbucks focus is on its customer base. Their customers are young, social media savvy, and affluent. They’re into the latest thing. On Facebook, the Starbucks management doesn’t post too often; they let their fans do all the talking. But when management does post, it’s usually fun things like contests, tips on things, as well as low-key sales pitches. Starbucks also allows customers to reload their Starbucks mobile card from Facebook. It’s all about creating relationships with existing customers to increase sales and add new customers. Free advertising from existing customer from their feedback adds on new customers at virtually no cost.
On Twitter, Starbucks connects with followers who want to catch up on the latest news and updates and the staff uses Twitter as a service reaching out to customers who are talking about their experiences with the stores and products. The staff checks out Twitter all day long to help keep satisfied customers satisfied and to settle any problems quickly before they get out of hand.
The similarities between Starbucks homegrown site, http://mystarbucksidea.force.com/, And Facebook or Twitter is that while getting customers is good, keeping them is even better. With over 23,000 stores, the company has reached a point where advertising on TV or radio has only so much impact. It no practices f-Commerce where developing social relationships online becomes critically important to keep customers (Turban, 2012). There are similarities on each of the social media sites that Starbucks has a presence, such as encouraging ideas for new drinks are food, attending social events at a nearby store. But each of these sites serves a different clientele. Facebook, for instance, is more family oriented than Twitter, which is more individualistic. All have a love for coffee which is the commonality of this community. Starbucks needs to use these other social media outlets so that it captures every possible customer. And the relationship needs to be tailored to fit the audience, a time-honored tradition in sales. The message can be the same, only stated differently for each audience (McNamara & Moore-Mangin, 2015).
Was the reason for Netflix’s success due to implementing the Cinematch search engine on its system? Yes, it was a major contribution because of its ability to conduct extensive data mining; this software agent uses data mining apps to sort through a database of more than 3 billion films and customers’ rental history. Cinematch suggests different movies to rent to the customer. It’s a personalization similar to that offered by amazon.com when it suggests different book titles customers. The basis of the recommendation is a comparison of the individual’s likes and preferences, comparing them to people with similar tastes. With this type of suggestive system, Netflix tells subscribers which movies they probably would like and shows a comparison of what other similar people are watching.
Netflix has already successfully moved from just DVD rentals to streaming video. They have, in fact, been offering television series shows that has drawn in an even larger audience that has helped to increase their revenues beyond what just renting movies could do (Cohen, 2013).
Both Starbucks and Netflix have successfully moved into the Web 2.0 world using social media and search tools effectively to meet their customer’s needs and demands. Netflix moved successfully from being a DVD movie rental business doing mail-order only business, to becoming the preeminent streaming entertainment company with millions of subscribers. Both companies managed to take current technology and develop systems that meet the customer’s needs and making themselves very profitable with bright futures.
Cohen, P. (2013, April 23). Forbes Welcome. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/petercohan
Huff, T. (2014, August 23). How Starbucks Crushes It on Social Media | Social Media Today. Retrieved
McNamara, T., & Moore-Mangin, A. (2015, August 3). Starbucks and Social Media: It’s About More than
Just Coffee – EContent Magazine. Retrieved from
Turban, E. (2012). Electronic commerce 2012: A managerial and social networks
perspective. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.