Starbucks Election Day Coffee Giveaway: Cheap, Effective PR

Starbucks' Election Day free coffee wasn't about goodwill or celebrating democracy—it was marketing. And it was cheap, costing around $350,000 for a single ad on Saturday Night Live. Since one in every five or six customers buy food, and figuring in the raw cost of coffee, Starbucks likely made money on the promotion. AdAge reports:

But the value of coverage relating to the giveaway -- from The Wall Street Journal, CNBC and Newsweek, to name a few -- as well as rampant blog chatter likely superseded the chain's investment.

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