Every brand can make a mistake

When Starbucks first came to South East Asia the general perception was that no one in the region would pay US$4 and upwards for a cup of coffee when a decent cup of local coffee (kopi-O as we call it here in Malaysia and we’re the ones who drink it without sugar or condensed milk) would set you back no more than one dollar.

But Starbucks is a classic brand that understands better than most the new realities of branding. And one of those new realities is the experience consumers have with the brand. Get that experience right and consumers will pay well over the odds for the product.

Starbucks has got it right globally and the special experience Starbuck’s personnel create for each customer is what brings customers back time and time again.

Part of the Starbucks experience is the greeting and their use of your name to identify your drink from all the others at the serving area.

One traveller called Veronica went to a Starbucks in Hong Kong and as you can see from the image below, the Barista didn’t quite get her name right.


She was unimpressed although I don’t really see the big deal. After all, most of us in this part of the world have experienced this at least once. My first name is Marcus and it has been translated into Marks, Marqus and bizarrely, Fungus. I’m serious. Now, I just say Max and it works every time.