McDonald's, Starbucks take coffee war...

McDonald's, Starbucks take coffee war to national ad battlefield

There are 77 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from May 4, 2009, titled McDonald's, Starbucks take coffee war to national ad battlefield. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

On Tuesday, McDonald's begins a massive advertising blitz to persuade customers to associate its famous "Mc" prefix with fancy coffee.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Chicago Tribune.

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Mary Mary

Chicago, IL

#1 May 4, 2009
McDonalds blows, I would never consider that a premium coffe place.
Hmm

Chicago, IL

#2 May 4, 2009
The McDonald's specialty cofees are nothing but watered down junk with bad flavoring thrown in the mask its lack of flavor. Not that Starbucks is much better, but McDonald's isn't all that.
Gobsmacked

Warrenville, IL

#4 May 4, 2009
"...their customers are better." LOL!

Charbucks' brew blows, unless you load it up with French Vanilla Fluff to cover up the burnt offerings underneath. McD's coffee has always been McNasty. They've got a long way to go. Personally, I like the coffee at Dunkin' Donuts, even though they don't offer canned atmosphere and wi-fi.
suckernut

United States

#5 May 4, 2009
Not only you can eat garbage now, but you can also wash it down with a sewer at McD and Starcrap. Do you people have any brain...er, taste buds?
Bodum

Santa Clara, CA

#6 May 4, 2009
The coffee in the Jiffy Lube waiting room is probably satisfying enough for McD customers.
reality

Glen Ellyn, IL

#7 May 4, 2009
Starbucks is going to lose this "war"!
starbucks guy

Saint Louis, MO

#8 May 4, 2009
I don't think Starbucks has anything to worry about. McDonald's will source the cheapest ingredients, probably use some condensed instant coffee mix produced in large factory, and then load it up with high-fructose corn syrup. Throw in some processed powdered milk and tell the sheep at the counter that they've just had a gourmet coffee. The sheep won't know any better and will continue to consume said substandard product as they always have. I don't see the clientele overlapping much if at all.
reality

Glen Ellyn, IL

#9 May 4, 2009
AMERICA SUCKS NOW wrote:
When I buy coffee I prefer to go to Starbucks not because the coffee is better but because their customers are better.
So you pay extra to "mingle" with people who like to waste money, thinking that it somehow makes you "better"? Talk about a "wantabe"!
Marketing Genius

Chicago, IL

#10 May 4, 2009
Ha! What's even better marketing is that McD's hires someone whose last name is "Golden" (as in 'arches') as their chief marketing exec. How McBrilliant is that!:) Too bad placing a 'Mc' in front of everything they sell doesn't always make it taste good. Hello?!? Can anyone say 'McRib'??
martiniduck

Wheaton, IL

#11 May 4, 2009
Starbucks is over priced and it's coffee is just bitter,like their staff.
McD's is cheaper and it's O.K. for what you pay. After you add your whip cream, sugar, flavor and milk, you cant taste the coffee anyway, so you mine as well go cheep. Caribou has the best tasting coffee, for someone like me who like their coffee strait up on the rocks. Dunkin is a close 2nd in taste.
Mr Houston

Houston, TX

#12 May 4, 2009
starbucks guy wrote:
I don't think Starbucks has anything to worry about. McDonald's will source the cheapest ingredients, probably use some condensed instant coffee mix produced in large factory, and then load it up with high-fructose corn syrup. Throw in some processed powdered milk and tell the sheep at the counter that they've just had a gourmet coffee. The sheep won't know any better and will continue to consume said substandard product as they always have. I don't see the clientele overlapping much if at all.
Starbucks has been doing that since their inception. Ya'll are just addicted to paying 3 dollars a cup more than what it's worth.
Dante

Homewood, IL

#13 May 4, 2009
The fact remains that Starbucks customers are loyal, brilliant & come in for more than a cup of coffee. McDonald's coffee, as well as Dunkin' Donuts, is nothing more than brown water. Folks, if you're in it for the convenience, stick to what you know. Nothing.
Nick

Wayne, IL

#14 May 4, 2009
I can afford a cup of Starbucks everyday...even twice. But I've been a loyal McD's coffee drinker ever since I tasted both. McDonalds is just better--not just cheaper.

They're quicker at the drive-thru too, and you don't have to chock a few more quarters into some tip jar perched on the window ledge either.
MRGIGGLES

United States

#15 May 4, 2009
Starbucks has something to worry about if they give themselves something to worry about. Which they seem to be doing.

Meaning: Starbucks best strategy would be to place renewed emphasis on its upmarket position and just accept the benefits and costs of that decision and move on. The costs will be drop in total revenue and probably some store closings. But the benefits will be increased profitability and a better experience for customers.

What Starbucks is trying to do is preserve a customer base that it properly shouldn't be after. It will not win a war with Dunkin & McDonalds. It just won't. They are too big, and their coffee is pretty darn good for the price. It should satisfy itself by being a 'treat' place for that demographic bracket.

You cannot be both a low-end and a high-end company. You just can't. You can't wage price wars on the one hand and claim yourself as a purveyor of superior coffee and better trained employees on the other. Something has got to give. They would be far better served going upmarket than continuing the rush downward.

People need to realize that every company does not need to appeal to every segment of society. And that's okay. It doesn't mean one sort is better than the other. It means companies specialize and segment to make sure consumers at all levels get what they want.

What will happen if bux continues this push is straightforward: when the economy turns back around (and it will, eventually), they're going to try to push upmarket again, given the fat profit margins available therein. But they're going to find that their upper demographic customers have abandoned them for indies or, gasp, some other coffee chain that comes along and realizes that some people will still pay extra for great coffee and great service, though not for sham versions of the two.
Words of Wisdom

Worth, IL

#16 May 4, 2009
I have tried the free cafe mondays and it wasnt good. I do like the regular coffee
Uh President Uh

Lynnwood, WA

#17 May 4, 2009
No thanks. uh, no thanks, uh, no thanks, uh, uh,!!
Idzan Ismail

Kuching, Malaysia

#19 May 4, 2009
Uh President Uh wrote:
No thanks. uh, no thanks, uh, no thanks, uh, uh,!!
Love your moniker, love your comments.
Sounds like someone we know.
Huhu.
2 black eyes

Port Saint Lucie, FL

#20 May 4, 2009
McDonalds is marketing the SUV of coffee: tasteless, overpriced, sweetened and homogenized monstrosities for banal, fat, cowardly and gullible Americans...

I predict a HUGE success.
Jerry D

Allentown, PA

#21 May 4, 2009
Dante wrote:
The fact remains that Starbucks customers are loyal, brilliant & come in for more than a cup of coffee. McDonald's coffee, as well as Dunkin' Donuts, is nothing more than brown water. Folks, if you're in it for the convenience, stick to what you know. Nothing.
Dante, you're just the sort of fool that Starbucks relies on to sell 12 cents worth of product for $4.50.
jfr

Virginia Beach, VA

#22 May 5, 2009
I love my Wawa coffee! 7/11 after that, that other stuff? Just too darn expensive.

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