My message to the U.K. (and Ireland)

Someone explained to me how to send Darcy Willson-Rymer, managing director of Starbucks in the U.K. & Ireland, a direct message on Twitter. So I will, in response to his kind note. But my pitch to him takes more than140 characters, so I’m going to post my message here, and use the Twitter message to bring him here.

A lot of trouble, but potentially worth it. It’s a cosa de bizaneese, as Sollozzo would say. Here’s the message:

Thanks for the kind word on my blog post!

But seriously, would you pass on my idea to someone in your marketing area? I truly think my blog (and possibly other blogs, but mine first) could be part of a great symbiotic relationship with Starbucks. Starbucks stores are full of people with laptops. Advertising on blogs seems a natural fit. And if those bloggers are blogging FROM Starbucks stores, you’ve got a great promotional information loop going.

I think it could work. And in case you’ve lost the link to my idea, here it is:

Hey, I’d even be glad to go blog from some of your stores in the UK (if my fare were paid). Ireland, too.

Here’s hoping someone at your end sees the potential I see,

-Brad Warthen

How was that? I’m rather new to making business pitches…

9 thoughts on “My message to the U.K. (and Ireland)

  1. doug_ross

    How much additional revenue do you think you could deliver to Starbucks for their investment in your blog?

    There would have to be some way for Starbucks to measure the impact. Like a printable coupon that would have a barcode or some other way to identify the direct link between your blog and a purchase in their store.

    Honestly, I think you would have to have a readership that was several orders of magnitude larger before Starbucks would be interested. Unique visitors somewhere in the Drudge, Huffington Post, Andrew Sullivan, etc. range. To get those kind of numbers, you have to present more content than a dozen rants against Mark Sanford per day.

  2. Brad Warthen

    … and thanks for the vote of confidence, Doug. Why do you always have to be so negative?

    Seriously, I think I have a marketable niche. A certain number of people come to my blog because they’re interested in my “rants.”

    Think about it — you were interested enough in the blog that you proposed we get together for breakfast, which I thought was enjoyable, and wrote about on the blog. Conceivably, some other people — including some who aren’t so critical, maybe — would want to drop by and catch me in the blogging act at a coffeehouse. It’s not beyond the realm of possibility.

    And while they’re there, they just might buy some coffee.

    But beyond that, I see it as a whole new marketing initiative for Starbucks, branching into a medium that is a great fit for the product. I could be the South Carolina guy, and they could get other bloggers in other states and cities to do similar deals. I think it has a lot of potential. It’s not just about me. As you say, there’s gotta be something in it for Starbucks, and I think there would be.

    The company’s been taking some heat lately for getting all time-and-motion efficient. But the human interaction remains a huge part of the Starbucks experience, and I think hiring bloggers like me would help to underline that, in special ways that would related specifically to each respective market…

  3. BillC

    Doug is just stating the truth. If you think you’re little blog here is worthy of Starbuck investing thousands of dollars into it, then go for it… all they can do is say no. Well they could laugh at it and say no… I guess that would be worse than just a plain old “no”.

    I’m sure people would be lined up around the corner across the country to get into a Starbucks with the infamous Brad Warthen inside drinking a $6 cup of coffee.

    If Starbucks doesn’t bite, you could always approach McDonalds or Krispy Kreme.

  4. doug_ross

    Sorry you took my comments as negative. I was only hoping to offer some realistic view. Let’s say you want to make $10,000 from Starbucks. Theoretically, how much additional revenue would you think Starbucks would have to generate from your blog to justify spending $10,000? $40,000? Can you deliver 10,000 cups of $4 coffee? That’s how I would look at it if I were looking to invest in advertising.

    Then you have to consider your audience. I’m guessing that Starbucks is probably geared more toward the 30 and under crowd for the most part. Can you deliver that demographic? Do you have any statistics on page views, unique readers, etc. that would help make your case?

    You probably could find out how much Starbucks spent on advertising in The State newspaper in the past year. Why don’t you use that as a starting point to determine what a likely initial investment might be in your blog.

    Then you have to think about turning off comments on your blog because I’m pretty sure Starbucks doesn’t want to be associated with a blog where people might say nasty things about them. You also have to decide whether the content you post will not offend anyone at Starbucks – they aren’t going to spend money if they can’t control the message.

    Personally, I think you should do something like write a book with behind the scenes info about the South Carolina political scene. If you don’t want to name names then maybe write a satire with thinly veiled references that we can speculate about.

  5. Brad Warthen

    Actually, Doug, I’ve had discussions with someone in New York about a book. Don’t know whether anything will come of it.
    And unless there’s an advance involved, I’m not sure how I can swing it. But we’ll see…

  6. Lee Muller

    The UK trades a terrorist who should have been executed for a promise of Libyan oil, and Brad is all atwitter about Starbucks in Ireland.


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