You've come to a nation of tea drinkers and introduced Seattle-style burnt coffee and fancy beverages with Italian-ish names, but someone back in corporate headquarters really needs to study their geography before tweeting.
It was a grand gesture, to tweet an offer to win a free frappuccino. Everyone's doing something to celebrate the Queen's Golden Jubilee. The
ubiquitous coffee vendor just wanted to join in the marketing mania.
Except that Starbucks asked its Irish followers to tweet back about what made them proud to be British.
Not since 1922, Starbucks, and even before that there was no pride.
Once the caffeine buzz died down, and someone at Starbucks.ie read the replies, the company issued an apology.
Sorry. The tweet was supposed to go to followers in Great Britain only.
Starbucks has several stores spread across the island, but over-all they operate at a loss. The idea is to convince the Irish that a cuppa doesn't have to be tea, and that an iced blend of coffee, sugars, syrups and miscellaneous flavors is just what you need on a chilly June morning.
Thus far, the message isn't penetrating deep into Irish culture. Then again, the brews are pricey and who has that kind of money to throw away on a coffee these days?
The faux pas about British pride won't put a dent in the business. If anything, it might spark a little curiosity. After all, it's become a topic of discussion, with tweets and retweets and replies generating some free publicity.
And as any marketer will tell you, all publicity is good, even if it appears bitter, strong and in need of a great deal of sugar and cream to make it palatable.