Case Study: Starbucks X Ciroc - The Espresso Martini

Introduction

Brand partnerships not only allow brands to push the creative envelope and reach untapped markets, but they can also help revitalize brands that are struggling to keep up with modern trends.

 

As people begin returning to in-office schedules, there is an opportunity for Starbucks and Ciroc to uniquely reconnect with working professionals.

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The VISION

Working professionals are tired. Amidst lockdown regulations and work from home set-ups, nearly half of US workers feel physically and mentally exhausted after work. Yet, the pandemic also put a strong emphasis on work-life balances, a priority that many professionals are carrying well past COVID-19 lockdowns. Due to this, we're seeing more professionals that want to have a life after and outside of work. With the return of company happy hours, luncheons with clients, or just drinks with your team, people want to feel energized and mature with their drink order. We've grown out of our college Redbull vodka phase, and it's time to find a drink that better suits this next chapter of working life.

The OPPORTUNITY

Craft coffee is more popular than ever- Starbucks being the top of mind consideration for working professionals. Whether morning, afternoon, or evening, coffee is the catalyst that gets people through their days.

 

As people mature, so do their drink orders -- from the Four Loko to Redbull vodkas to Espresso Martinis, there has always been a need for caffeinated cocktails. Now it's time to offer an easier, portable, canned option for the working coffee fanatic and cocktail lover on the go. This audience could benefit from a quick and easy espresso martini option that maintains the same level of sophistication.

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The PROBLEM

The espresso martini is not an easy drink to make, and bartenders everywhere can agree that "it's always a hassle". The four major ingredients are customizable to individual preference and often not available in the common household (Kahlua/Sugar syrup).

 

Meanwhile, canned alcoholic beverages are dominating the market. With more than 150 brands launching a hard seltzer/RTD line in 2021 alone, the landscape is extremely competitive -- and Ciroc is struggling to keep up with this ever-evolving beverage market.

The INSIGHT

For working professionals, espresso martinis are the perfect, sophisticated afterwork drink -- but can be a pain to make or not widely available.