Why Starbucks Has Mastered the Art of Online Brand Management

I set up Google Alerts for Starbucks.

I think for Starbucks, there are several keywords that need to be managed: scandal, sugar, holiday drinks. I used Google to search for these keywords, and the results are as follows:

The daughter of police chief in the Starbucks cup scandal denounces him: ‘He is absolutely a pig’.

Festive Starbucks drinks revealed to contain up to 23 teaspoons of sugar in a new survey.

Starbucks releases a new cold brew drink for the holidays.

Is it right or wrong for a business to try to hide negative information online?

In fact, I think every company has tried to hide negative information on the Internet. If I’m the CEO of Starbucks, I certainly don’t want my company’s scandal to be exposed because it will seriously affect the company’s reputation and performance. I dare say that no company will succeed without the trust of consumers. However, on the moral level, enterprises should not try to hide negative information online because it is a deception for consumers. Of course, in today’s era of information transparency, it is difficult for companies to hide negative information. In general, enterprises should take responsibility honestly rather than avoid it.

With 36 million Facebook likes and 10 million Twitter followers, Starbucks has clearly mastered the art of social media. It’s also translated social fans into real revenue: The company’s famous Tweet-a-Coffee Twitter campaign, for instance, generated $180,000 in direct sales in less than a month.

Starbucks, of course, has an entire team of social media strategists working round the clock. There is, however, a lesser-known secret to its success: Its own employees do lots of tweeting and posting themselves. A unique employee advocacy program actively encourages staff to share updates about the brand on their own social media accounts.

From what I see Starbucks is certainly doing quite well with the resonance thing, with most promoted tweets being Re-tweeted by the hundreds. No doubt, Starbucks Has Mastered the Art of Online Brand Management.


Figure 2f from: Irimia R, Gottschling M (2019) Taxonomic revision of Rochefortia Sw. (Ehretiaceae, Boraginales). Biodiversity Data Journal 4: e7720. https://doi.org/10.3897/BDJ.4.e7720. (n.d.). doi: 10.3897/bdj.4.e7720.figure2fHolmes, R. (2019, November 6). How To Turn Your Entire Staff Into A Social Media Army. Retrieved from https://www.fastcompany.com/3053233/how-to-turn-your-entire-staff-into-a-social-media-army.

The significance of inbound marketing for marketers

Hello, I’m Boyao, a graduate student in marketing from Oregon State University. In the class of MRKT 584, I chose to study inbound marketing knowledge and obtained certification. The following picture is my Inbound Marketing Certificate.

I would like to say that through this stage of learning, the impact on me is far-reaching. I not only gained rich knowledge of inbound marketing but also learned how to use this knowledge in my future career.

Today, I would like to introduce the significance of inbound marketing for marketers.

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is a business methodology that attracts customers by creating valuable content and experiences tailored to them. While outbound marketing interrupts your audience with content they don’t want, inbound marketing forms connections they’re looking for and solves problems they already have.

My personal experience in studying inbound Marketing

In fact, it took me about four weeks to complete the inbound marketing course. This course includes 17 videos, several quizzes, and the final exam. For me, all the contents of this course are brand-new, I am a person eager to learn new knowledge, and all the contents of this course are deeply loved by me. The lecturer patiently explained each knowledge point to the students and used animation and pictures to demonstrate the principle of the process. In general, I have gained a lot in this class. I am very grateful to MRKT 584 for this opportunity to enrich myself. People in every stage of learning will experience setbacks and failures, I also experienced these in the study of inbound marketing. In fact, from the initial definitions of funnels and flywheels to the buyer’s journey, I was confused. I know their definition, but when I think about how to use it in real life, I don’t know what to do. As a result, I repeatedly watch videos that I don’t understand and search for relevant materials in Google. In the end, I really understand how they all work through different examples. I don’t think there’s anything happier than getting new knowledge. On the road of learning, don’t be afraid to encounter difficulties and setbacks. The significance of life lies in continuous learning and progress.

Why inbound marketing is important for marketers?

Inbound marketing earns the attention of customers, makes your company easy to be found, and draws customers into your overall message and business practices. Modern, up to date, effective marketers make their way into the hearts and minds of their customers.

In the study of inbound marketing, the most meaningful knowledge I get is the three strategies of inbound marketing: attracting strategy, engaging strategy, and delighting strategy. Customers who respond to these strategies are looking for products similar to what you’re selling, meaning that they’re closer to being qualified leads than those who have only been exposed to outbound marketing strategies.

Inbound marketing is extremely useful for marketers. Customers who respond to these strategies are looking for products similar to what you’re selling, meaning that they’re closer to being qualified leads than those who have only been exposed to outbound marketing strategies.

It allows for the building of long-term relationships since it’s based on the continuous delivery of information and the two-way nature of social media communication. This allows companies to build trust with potential clients until they are ready to make the leap and buy the product or service.

Due to its content-driven nature, inbound marketing allows the company to produce authoritative content that builds credibility in the marketplace and can provide potential consumers with the impression that the company is knowledgeable and able to help them.

On a scale of 1-5, I will undoubtedly recommend this class of inbound marketing to my classmates and friends with the possibility of 5 points, because there are many advantages of inbound marketing. First, inbound marketing can improve visibility and brand awareness. Second, inbound marketing can simplify sales and marketing. Third, inbound marketing can increase the company’s trust and credibility. Finally, inbound marketing can help companies generate high-quality traffic and potential customers.

Using personas in email marketing

Personas are also pivotal in crafting effective email marketing campaigns. Highly targeted emails get more opens, clicks, and engagement. Targeted emails are also more optimized for lead generation and likely to result in increased conversions.

Speaking directly to a buyer persona’s pain points is key when it comes to the strategy and messaging of an email campaign. Consider their buying stage, demographics, role at the company, etc. This way, when it comes to crafting the bigger picture strategy, or something smaller like a subject line, you’ll know what to say and how to say it.

Here are a few actionable ways to apply this targeted approach to email marketing:

Developing personas for your email marketing

If you work in marketing, chances are good that your team or company has developed personas at some point. If you haven’t, it’s a fairly easy exercise to knock out. Simply put yourself in the shoes of your customers and determine each persona’s role, goals, challenges, etc.

Defined as “fictional, generalized representations of your ideal customers” by Hubspot, personas distill the information you already know about your audience with the goal of reaching them in more targeted ways. When developing personas for your email audience specifically, you’ll want to develop those same generalized representations for people who have subscribed to your email list in one way or another. A few elements to consider:

  • Is this person a lead, prospect, customer, or former customer?
  • How did they sign up for your list?
  • What resources have they downloaded?
  • What web pages have they (or have they not) visited?

Campaign Strategy and Goals

Every great email marketing campaign has an overarching goal and, ideally, is based on where your typical buyer is in the buying process.

If a typical buyer hasn’t heard of your company before, you are better off sending an email campaign that focuses on brand awareness. The further they get down the funnel, the transition to a more lead-focused strategy.

Collecting the right data for each persona

Once you’ve decided on the qualification criteria for the personas you’d like to target, you need to gather the data you’ll need to segment your email list appropriately.

The easiest way to do this is to include the data you need from the get-go in your email signup form. Many marketers shy away from asking for a lot of fields on their signup form but never fear: Most people are willing to part with more information if they know it will mean receiving content and offers that are actually relevant to their needs and interests.

Or, if you’d rather reduce signup friction by avoiding a lot of form fields, including an email in your welcome series that asks subscribers to update their preferences, along with the promise that they’ll receive emails catered to their interests. You’ll be shocked at the kind of response rates this kind of email gets – especially if you keep things simple, focused, and direct the CTA to a mobile-optimized form on your website.

Write Compelling Copy

This should go without saying, but steer clear of listing of your company’s services. Instead, envision your buyer persona’s everyday problems…how can your company help solve them? Take into consideration a buyer’s biggest concerns and struggles, and then write copy that will address those concerns.

Also, consider word usage and particular phrases. The words used to market to a Millennial are going to be different than those used to speak to a Baby Boomer. So take into consideration things like age and educational background. Would the reader respond well to complex words or a colloquial approach? All of these considerations can help hone in on a message that will speak to the persona.

Relevance is everything in email marketing

The concept of “relevance” has become a bit of a cliché in the marketing industry, but it’s only because it can’t be said enough: Today’s savvy consumers both expect and deserve personalized experiences, and if they don’t get it, they’re gone. In fact, 56% of people unsubscribe from emails due to content that’s no longer relevant to them (Chadwick Martin Bailey). The good news is that when you get that subscriber experience right, it leads to major results. Relevant emails drive 18x more revenue than broadcast emails (Juniper Research).

The Benefits of Using Buyer Personas for Email Marketing

Creating buyer personas for email marketing can help you stay on track with your marketing strategy.  Ensure that all of your marketing materials are designed specifically for your target audience by using buyer personas.  As inboxes are becoming increasingly overcrowded, you need to produce emails that catch the eye of the recipient.  Making emails more personal and tailored to your recipients is an excellent way to improve email performance.


Birch, A. (2018, February 27). Creating Buyer Personas for Email Marketing Campaigns. Retrieved from https://www.wiredplus.com/hub/creating-buyer-personas-email-marketing/.Ross, L. (2018, April 11). How to utilize personas for more effective email marketing. Retrieved from https://www.invespcro.com/blog/how-to-utilize-personas-for-more-effective-email-marketing/.Using Buyer Personas in Email Marketing Campaigns. (2019, March 7). Retrieved from https://gimmemojo.com/2018/01/15/using-buyer-personas-email-marketing-campaigns/.

How advertising affects society and our life

How many advertisements have you seen in your life? The average person sees between 280 and 310 advertisements per day. Advertisements are a great way to make people aware of products, issues, and more. But has advertising become a problem for society? Everyone has seen those ads where advertisers try to convince the consumer that a product will make your life five times better and their life won’t be better until they buy the product. The advertiser’s intentions are to try to get into your mind and influence your thoughts and decisions. Advertisements like the car, insurance, medicine, beverage, and political commercials often try to influence the consumer. Advertising is harmful to society because of its strong influence.

If let me rate the current online advertising risks, I would probably give 3 points. They have already posed a threat to our society, but they are not irreparable.

So what exactly are the main negative effects of advertising on society?

Let’s find out…

Advertising makes us feel that we’re not good enough as we are.

We have an economic system in which people have to make money in order to survive, no matter how manipulative techniques they use to achieve that — and this can be clearly seen in the advertising industry.

To sell your stuff, advertisements first make you feel like crap. How do they achieve this? By showing you what the ideal life is supposed to be, and then making you compare your ordinary life to it. This way they slowly lead you to believe that you’re not beautiful, intelligent, confident, and so on, until they fully convince you that you basically suck. The reason? To make you feel insecure so that they can then emotionally manipulate you.

Advertising makes us think that everything we need is for sale.

Another serious ill effect of advertising is that it feeds us with the wrong impression that everything we need can be bought, and hence that money should be our measure of success and prime goal in life.

Without shopping, advertisements tell you that you can’t find contentment. Thus, advertisements are fueling your desire to work like a slave, just so you can spend your hard-earned money on things that will ultimately leave you disappointed and dissatisfied.

Advertising makes us associate happiness with consumerism.

After they’ve achieved to ruin our self-esteem, advertisements are trying to fool us into thinking that only products and services can make us feel better. In other words, advertisements create a problem and then offer us a solution to it. What is it? You guessed right: Shopping.

Once they achieve to make you feel ugly, they sell you beauty products so you can improve on your ugliness. Once they manage to make you believe that you are not important, they sell you expensive clothes so you can attract the attention of others. And so on and so forth.

In short, advertisements promise you happiness, provided that you spend money in return. The result? Consuming stuff you don’t even need and supporting the production of unnecessary waste that is polluting our planet.

I have listed a few ethics for digital marketers:

1. Never Compromise On Privacy

Privacy is a very sensitive domain as it is the top concern of the internet generation. If you are doing some marketing via social media, make sure you do not violate privacy rules. Some companies extract Facebook and LinkedIn data to build their email campaigns. This is a cutting-edge sword and requires attention to core concerns. Just a promise of not spamming might not be enough, you need to give unsubscribe option with every message you deliver.

2. Speak Truth

If you have some interest or affiliation in something being discussed, you need to politely communicate your affiliation. It does not require that you explain your interests but tell as to why are you supporting a particular thing. Another important element here is to be true to yourself as well as the audience.

3. Commit To Sustainability And Human Rights 

Ethical consumerism is becoming a bigger priority for many customers. People want to feel assured that what they are purchasing is sustainable and ethically produced. Be honest about your ingredients, product components, and your supply chain.

4. Respond Meaningfully To Consumer Concerns

If customers have safety concerns about a product or service, then this should be seen as a company’s top priority. Always seek to protect consumer rights and immediately investigate any complaint.

5. Don’t Exploit Emotions

Getting an emotional reaction from consumers is one of the most effective ways to generate interest. However, if you evoke negative emotions such as rage, fear, sadness in a tasteless way, this could be seen as exploitative. Customers want their emotions to be sympathized with, not manipulated.

6. Use the Word “Sponsored”

This is a quick and easy way to ensure your digital media is always covered. Using the word “sponsored” on all your digital campaigns and other media will alert your audiences it is a sponsored post from your brand.

7. Open the Lines of Communication

When using digital media, it is best to maintain an open-door policy and communicate with your audiences on a consistent basis. This not only helps build brand integrity but can help in the event of a mishap. When audiences trust you, it is easier for them to forgive a mistake, rather than having disgruntled customers that make things worse by sharing their experiences on social media.

8. Don’t Exaggerate

When you exaggerate the benefits of a product or service, you are making a false claim. You are promising a customer a level of quality that cannot be delivered.


10 Principles Of Ethical Marketing. (2019, February 28). Retrieved from https://www.figarodigital.co.uk/article/10-principles-of-ethical-marketing/.Akbar, T. A. T., & Israyelle. (n.d.). 7 Fundamental Ethics of Social Media Marketing. Retrieved from https://www.business2community.com/social-media/7-fundamental-ethics-social-media-marketing-01571504.ProfileTree. (2019, August 30). Ethics and Legalities of Digital Marketing. Retrieved from https://www.profiletree.com/ethics-and-legalities-of-digital-marketing/.

What To Do When Your Webpage Doesn’t Rank. What are your recommendations for improving the search ranking of the poor performing webpages?

1. Define a keyword list

Now that you understand where your pages rank for certain key terms, you’ll be able to refine and define a keyword list that you can base your website’s content around – in short, you’ll be able to pick the most relevant keywords for your site to bring in related traffic that increases your page ranking.

If you target the right keywords for each page of your website based on what you’re trying to sell, the message you’re trying to communicate and where you expect to meet the customer on their buying journey, you’ll see a vast improvement in your organic search rankings.

To define the most successful list possible, you should use a targeted mix of both broad, exact and long-tail keywords that are specific to what you’re selling and how your users search. You should also ask yourself the following questions…

  • What keywords will drive conversions?
  • What central topics can my keywords be grouped into?
  • What keywords could I generate content on that will result in rankings and traffic?

To go about analyzing and selecting your keywords, you should use the following tools…

2. Quality copy always wins

Following on from our last point: good copy appeals to humans and as a result, will help you rank better in search engines.

Of course, to work for search engines, you need a quality copy with strong anchor text and clearly defined headlines. Since Google’s Panda algorithm update back in 2011 (where many websites suffered a severe dip in search authority) marketers must focus on creating the best user experience possible to rank well. Good copywriting that incorporates keywords both sparsely and naturally is the key to boosting your organic rankings – allowing you to humanize your brand while creating a better customer experience.

3. Optimize your images

Pictures and other images are great for your website.

But you need to make sure they are optimized properly if you want these images to improve your SEO ranking.

I’m referring to factors such as the file format and size.

Huge images can slow your page loading time, which, as I’ve said, hurts your ranking.

Resize or compress your images to optimize them.

You can also use your images to sneak in keywords by naming them accordingly.

For example, let’s say you have a website that sells toiletries or other bath products.

Instead of naming an image something like “shampoo1,” you could name it “best shampoo for long hair.”

You can also strategically use keywords in the title of your image as well as the caption or description.

4. Diversify your links

There are a lot of different types of links you can get such as blog roll links, homepage links, links from blog posts, directory links, educational links, footer links, etc. SEOs have a tendency to build only one, instead of each, of these types of links.

If you want to rank high, you can’t just focus on one type of link building method such as directory links. Instead, you need to get links to your site from blogs, directories, and sometimes from the homepages of other sites. Just make sure whatever links you are building are also relevant as those links tend to have the biggest impact.

For example, with Quick Sprout, I have a variety of sites linking to me. Here is an example of a news site linka sidebar link from a popular blog, a link within a blog post, and a link from an educational website, all linking to my site. The diversification of links coming into the site is what partly accounts for over 50% of my monthly traffic from Google.

5. Integrate Social Media sharing buttons in your posts

Most search engines including Google take the help of social networking websites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc. to determine what reactions a webpage is getting from real users. When you like a link on Facebook, or retweet your favorite blog post on Twitter, or give a post you liked a +1 that means you liked the post, right? Search engines these days give posts with good social reactions more priority in SERPs. A bonus would be increased traffic from those social networking sites for your content. You can implement social sharing buttons on your website and get those advantages.

Bonus Advice: be smart yourself, don’t insensibly trust others

This one is a bit different from the rest of the suggestions but it’s applicable for many new bloggers and site owners. I’ve seen them starting out on knowledge sucking sprees. They try to stuff their brains with as much as random blogging and web development knowledge as possible in as little time as possible. This results in them not sticking to a particular strategy and implementing hundreds and thousands of unimportant and useless things on their sites which not only do no good to them but occasionally also hurt their sites.


Create a Website. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.quicksprout.com/ways-to-improve-seo-ranking/.Gaskin. (2019, March 21). 10 Tips to Increase Your Organic Page Ranking. Retrieved from https://digitalmarketinginstitute.com/blog/2017-4-20-10-tips-to-increase-your-organic-page-ranking.Palit, R. (2019, May 16). Boost WordPress SEO – 31 Ways to Improve WordPress SEO. Retrieved from https://techtage.com/31-ways-to-better-wordpress-seo/.

5 Ways to Increase Landing Page Conversions

1. Try a Splash of Color

Improve your landing page by learning from the best and most successful companies. Seek out landing pages that appeal to you and use them as inspiration.

Slack is a perfect and inspiring example of interactive design, beautiful heading, and subheading, hero illustrations, optimizing the call to action for sign-ups, and big footers.

As per Stewart Butterfield, instead of using the marketing and sales techniques to bring the value of their service, Slack team has managed to achieve this through “a good copywriting in the lead-form, quick-loading pages, great welcome emails, with comprehensive and accurate search, with purposeful loading screens, and thoughtfully implemented and well-functioning features of all kinds.”

2. Control Your Visitors’ Attention

People tend to pay attention to everything new and unusual. Customizing important elements in an unusual style, you will highlight them in the eyes of visitors.

Provoke the senses to attract attention with:

People switch from one task to another very easily. To keep visitors from getting distracted and leaving your page, be sure to use active elements and moving parts that will keep them engaged.

3. Make Your Landing Page Ad Specific 

In the case of landing pages, more is better. According to HubSpot companies that increase the number of landing pages from 10 to 15 can see up to a 55% increase in leads. As you can see in the chart below the New Leads Index grows as the number of different landing pages is created. This does not mean everyone should make 1000 landing pages but shows how adjusting keywords, copy and visuals to cater to each campaign increases conversions. 

4. Write headlines that play to emotion

“Chances are that the reader is not going to read every word on the page, but they will definitely read the headlines. You should change and test the copy of your headline, making sure that it is attention-grabbing, clear, concise, and sums up your value proposition”, says Codal‘s Jenna Erickson.

Tamas Torok of Coding Sans runs experiments on her landing page headlines, by creating “some headline variations that trigger emotions. These emotions could be: feeling attractive, assertive, sense of belonging, exclusivity, feeling safe, etc.”

Torok recommends CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer tool “to check the emotional score of your headlines.”

5. Drive prequalified traffic through ads

Conversion rates are based on the number of people who land on your URL and convert.

It makes sense that these marketers are focusing on referring the right kind of traffic to boost the conversion rates of their landing pages.

“When utilizing pay-per-click to drive traffic to your landing page, making sure that those clicking on it will already be interested in the content is probably the most important part of getting it to convert,” says Noticed‘s E.M. Ricchini.

You can do the same by targeting a specific group of people through your ads.

Only refer people who are actively looking for a solution to the problem you’re solving, and you’re bound to increase conversion rates for your landing pages.

Richard Owens of firstfiveeight.com says: “By implementing a retargeting strategy to display social or Google Display Network ads to a user who has visited the landing page, but not seen the thank you page. […]  This target audience has displayed an interest in the content, and maybe assessing alternative options before engaging with a website.”

He says: “By displaying ads to this audience, you stay top of mind for when the researcher decides to take the next step with a business.”


16 Ways to Improve Your Landing Page Conversion Rates: Databox Blog. (2019, April 3). Retrieved from https://databox.com/improve-your-landing-page-conversion-rate.Miro, L., Miro, L. M. L., Miro, L., & Miro, L. (2019, September 15). 20 Easy Landing Page Design Tips to Boost Conversions. Retrieved from https://optinmonster.com/landing-page-design-tips/.Systems, eZ. (n.d.). 7 Easy Ways to Increase Landing Page Conversions. Retrieved from https://ez.no/Blog/7-Easy-Ways-to-Increase-Landing-Page-Conversions.