Many Americans start their day off with a morning cup of coffee. Some brew a pot at home but many add a few extra minutes to their morning commute to stop for a cup of their favorite flavor. With dozens of different coffee shops, how is one supposed to choose? The battle has been going on for over a decade between the two main contenders, Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks. Starbucks sells an upper class lifestyle to their coffee drinkers, while Dunkin Donuts sells a cup of joe for the average Joe. Each goes about advertising in a different manner. Through the use of print advertising, Starbucks shows its superiority to Dunkin Donuts by using powerful text, creating an aesthetic scene, and evoking specific emotions and thoughts.
The text in each advertisement says something about the product and company. The Starbucks’ ad reads, “The best coffee for the best YOU. Taste of Inspiration.” The words are so simple yet have a powerful meaning. Starbucks makes the consumer feel good about buying their product because if you are the best, you deserve the best. After all, they are selling an upper class lifestyle. The best part of the ad is that the emphasis isn’t even on the coffee; it is on “you” as it is displayed in big, bold green lettering. By making “you” feel like the best, one is more inclined to spend money on products that make them feel like the best. The statement, “Taste of Inspiration”, adds another layer of sophistication to this ad. Those words are written in script unlike the other words, to add elegance to it. It’s as if with a single sip of Starbucks you will feel enlightened. Starbucks markets itself as not just a coffee shop but also a lifestyle, unlike Dunkin Donuts.
Dunkin Donuts’ advertisement is all about the coffee. Dunkin Donuts’ ad reads, “There’s Coffee. Then There’s America’s Favorite Coffee.” DD gets to the point quickly; their ad comes right out and says they’re “America’s Favorite”. This statement seems somewhat presumptuous considering the amount of coffee shops all across America but also shows DD’s confidence in their product. They use America as a testimonial for their product. If it’s America’s favorite then they must have a great product. The text in advertisements is a major component but it would be nothing without the scene around it.
It is important for advisers to create an advertisement that will make people take time out of their day to look at. The Starbucks’ ad is a blend of about 5 warm colors. It gives a welcoming feeling as if the coffee is from your own home. The main focus in the picture is a normal Starbucks cup in the foreground but everything in the scene is relevant. Although the background is blurred to allow the cup to be the attention getter, the background is still an important part. The background is the inside of a Starbucks, which can be determined by the blurred outlines of chairs and tables. Using a Starbucks as the scene is a great marketing strategy because now the consumer is only thinking Starbucks. The advertisement leaves no room for confusion; it is all Starbucks. With Starbucks on the brain and a beautiful scene, who could look away? The ad has caught the consumer’s eye and with the text as reinforcement, it does a great job advertising Starbucks.
On the opposing side, Dunkin Donuts is more concerned with the actual coffee itself. The normal pink and orange lettering is displayed proudly on the standard cup of coffee. The cup is placed directly in front of your face. The text, mentioned above, isn’t the most important part of this advertisement. DD wants people to see the rich, black coffee in the cup. They want potential consumers to see the cup of coffee they could be getting if they choose to get DD. The text above the cup is only to reinforce the quality of it. Dunkin Donuts does a good job with product placement but is lacking character.
The DD ad doesn’t add anything fun or relatable to it. Starbucks not only mentioned “you” the consumer, but rather centered the whole ad around “you”. The customer is very important to Starbucks. The DD advertisement has a more “take me or leave me” approach. It’s almost like, “Hey! We’re America’s favorite, why would you go anywhere else?” The text in the DD ad is almost arrogant. Starbucks textual portion was well thought out and works well to bring the ad together.
When creating ads, advertisement companies choose every component specifically to create a precise feeling and thought in the potential consumer’s mind. The combination of colors and the text, in the Starbucks’ ad, make a person want to smile. Starbucks’ advertisement makes one feel warm and welcome. The contrast between the dark and the light colors creates a scene that people want to stop and look at. It’s welcoming to anyone, from teenagers to elderly citizens of any race. This advertisement’s demographic is anyone who drinks coffee, not just business people. Customers are meant to look at the ad and think, “I am the best, I deserve the best coffee.” The ad actually gives people self-confidence, in that, they promise to provide the best coffee to you because you are, in fact the best.
In contrast, Dunkin Donuts’ advertisement makes a statement about their reputation. They are less concerned with the consumer’s self-confidence but rather more concerned with giving the consumer a reason to choose them. They proudly state that they are America’s favorite, what more does a consumer need? No one is going to take a poll of everyone in America to confirm this statement; so instead, customers are left to rely on the information DD has provided. Dunkin Donuts’ advertisement leaves room to be challenged by expert coffee drinkers. The only way customers can prove the statement right or wrong is by going in and tasting a cup for themselves. Once they have purchased a cup, whether they agree or disagree, DD has won. The ad was meant to make a sale and it has done just that. In conclusion, both ads approached their print advertisements in a different way. Starbucks’ text shows that they are focused on the customer and not themselves unlike DD. The scene Starbucks shows is more aesthetically pleasing to consumers. Lastly the thoughts and emotions evoked from the Starbucks’ ad have more impact on potential customers.