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Mobile-Enabled Contest Turns Controversy into Branding Opp for Starbucks

A story on Mobile Marketer  details how Starbucks is doubling down on its red cups with a clever social marketing campaign. Starbucks is driving a final bit of holiday branding awareness by asking customers to draw designs on the company’s red cups and upload images to Instagram or Twitter using a designated hashtag for a chance to have their artwork featured.
According to the story by Alex Samuely, customers are asked to “upload their masterpieces using the #RedCupArt hashtag, which aggregates Starbucks’ favorites on a microsite.”

Amir Zonozi, chief strategy officer of Zoomph, Reston, VA, says, “This campaign is great for a number of reasons. It is a relatively low barrier of entry, you just need a Starbucks cup, and to get one you need to buy a drink during the holidays.”
The mobile-optimized microsite currently features several chosen posts. Consumers can scroll through the Tumblr-hosted page to view cups decorated with drawings of tree ornaments, poinsettias, dreamcatchers, Christmas trees and holiday-inspired graffiti.

Starbucks credits each artist’s Instagram account in the accompanying picture caption, ensuring that selected participants will experience social media buzz as other fans flock to their pages to scroll through other posts.
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