China Insights

‘Say it with Starbucks’ – Pioneering a new social marketing format

Sherry Chen

Research Consultant, Kantar Media CIC

Social 07.03.2017 / 11:50

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It's the first third-party O2O service between WeChat and a non-affiliated brand.

On January 24, Starbucks launched “Say it with Starbucks”, a new social gift feature embedded in the brand’s official WeChat service account. On February 10, this feature was upgraded through cooperation with WeChat platform. The upgraded new entrance is placed in the third party service column of WeChat Wallet, to enable easy access for shoppers.

Users can purchase coffee coupons or gift cards which can be used in the store, plus option to leave WeChat messages using text, picture or video for their friends. The process is very similar to handing out red envelopes on WeChat. This new gifting option has received high praise since its launch. This is the very first time WeChat opened its social function to a third party providing O2O service. A smart move that signifies the inauguration of a brand new marketing method.

“Say it with Starbucks” has attracted considerable attention. Within 25 days, 582 articles were released on the WeChat platform mentioning this service and the cumulative reads reached 1.29 million.

EN Say It With Starbucks Trend



Cooperation with WeChat increased exposure and strengthened the influence of Starbucks. Consumers are able to express their feelings more conveniently through this new form of gifting. Through social media platform, brands can leverage creative campaigns and new offerings to promote retail products. More importantly, the collaboration between digital online platform and offline brand is conducive to develop users’ paying habits and expand purchasing and consumption occasions among shared user bases for both the platform and the brand.

Source: Kantar Media CIC

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