Our relationship with customers goes beyond coffee: Deepa Krishnan, Tata Starbucks

The CMO of Tata Starbucks, Krishnan discusses the beverage brand’s recently launched delivery service, safety measures, campaigns & post-lockdown plans

e4m by Shreshtha Verma
Updated: Apr 21, 2020 8:41 AM
Deepa Krishnan

The COVID-19 health emergency has adversely affected the world economy. While half of the companies are waiting for the lockdown to end so that they can resume the work, the other half is finding ways to remain relevant during these testing times.

 Tata Starbucks, who belongs to the latter half, is opting for a digital route to sustain their sales and economy by launching social media campaigns and their debut in-home delivery service. As customers are home quarantined, the coffee brand is ensuring that they get their favourite beverage while they stay safe inside their homes. 

In conversation with exchange4media, Deepa Krishnan, CMO Tata Starbucks, opens about their recently-launched delivery service, safety measures, campaigns and post-lockdown plans.

 To ensure that their sales and economy doesn't fall during the health emergency, Tata Starbucks recently started home delivery in selected pockets of Mumbai, Bengaluru, Delhi and Gurugram with delivery partners Zomato and Swiggy.  

On being asked about their online delivery service, the CMO of Starbucks says, in the current conditions, one of the most convenient ways to engage with our customers is through home deliveries, which allows them to enjoy their favourite beverages and food from the safety of their own homes. 

Shedding light their unique relationship with their customers, Krishnan shares that Starbucks has a very strong and loyal customer base whom they interact with online frequently through virtual coffee tasting sessions and other such ways. 

 "At Tata Starbucks, our relationship with our customers goes beyond coffee. We make sure we are communicating in ways that best represent our brand values and stay connected to our customers even during these difficult times,” she says. 

Although the coffee giant has recently marked its debut in the online delivery service, the target audience remains the same.  

Krishnan says, "Our target audience is no different from our retail space. Our customers are early adopters, trendsetters, citizens with a global outlook and people who have a very strong sense of community and believe in contributing to make the world a better place. They are socially and environmentally conscious and value human connections." 

Tata Starbucks has always used digital advertising as its primary medium of communication. "We are continuing our efforts using the power of digital advertising even during the lockdown and are constantly connected with our customers through our digital platforms," asserts Krishnan. 

Starbucks has also been offering gift cards through its e-commerce partners. "Going forward we will have some interesting announcements to make in this regard post lockdown," the CMO highlights.

Soon after the lockdown is over, Starbucks will also launch the "Starbucks Mobile Order Payment app", reveals Krishnan. 

The Mobile Order Payment App, another innovation from Starbucks in India, has been designed to allow customers to order beverages on their phones and pick them up from the store, reducing the time spent in ordering lines.

 While a big part of Starbucks's business comes from in-store sales, it's also known for its omnichannel retail experience. "We are continuing our efforts using the power of digital mediums and new business models to ensure that we give our customers the Starbucks Experience they want even as times change," says Krishnan.

 Not just on the economic front, the coffee brand has also been actively fighting against the global health emergency on the social front by coming up with different initiatives, social media campaigns and donations. 

The coffee brand recently launched #ReconnectWithStarbucks campaign to spread positivity via our online channels. The campaign has received a great response on social media. It was designed by Starbuck'sagency partner WATConsult.  

The agency’s idea behind the campaign was to cement the connections with Starbucks customers during these times and let them cherish their favourite moments sitting at home, shares Krishnan.

 Starbucks had also announced a $10 million Starbucks global grant for its partners to ensure that they are taken care of financially if they need any help.

 Tata Starbucks has taken multiple measures to ensure the safety of its consumers as well as its delivery partners. As the coffee brand has started home deliveries during the lockdown, it is ensuring contact-less delivery. 

 For its employees and partners, Starbucks has taken multiple measures. For example, partners are being supported with pay and access to medical assistance or those who need to self-quarantine will be granted an additional 14-day paid leave. 

Post-lockdown plans for the global beverage brand include continuing with home delivery service and increasing focus on digital solutions like digital payments & transactions through the Mobile App.

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