The night before

As many of you know I am moving to Washington D.C. tomorrow. A 12 hour drive awaits me in the morning and if you asked if I’m looking forward to the move I would respond with a huge smile, giddy laugher and an enthusiastic, “YES!”  This was all before graduation. I’m sure most college graduates out there know the agitation that grows during the final semester of your college career and it feels like the excitement of throwing your cap up in the air is never going to happen.

It does. And it did.

Now, I’m excited to move to D.C., don’t get me wrong. But I am realizing the reality that awaits me. Being 12 hours from my closest family member, having to learn a new (big) city, only knowing a handfull of people, not being sure if your job is going to pay the bills… etc. Fear is trying to set in. My mind somehow wanders to these topics and feeds into the things that could go wrong or remind me that I’m only 21, I could never survive in a city.

But I know this; God has guided me to this place. He has opened doors, provided an amazing place to live, placed me within 15 minutes of my 3 best friends, provided a job (a fun one at that!) and the list could go on. As nervous as I am, a have an overwhelming sense of of peace about all of this.

I lived in the same house for 17 years, went to a university 2 hours away from home the size of my high school, have been taken care of up to this point. My life has been safe. This is a big step.

An adventure awaits. This is just the beginning of something greater. God is big. He has big plans for me, big plans for YOU.

See you in D.C.!

Things I’ve learned while interning

I am almost finished with my first internship. Now, I have to admit, going into this internship I was not very excited. After spending the past 3 months working with the staff at this marketing firm I have learned so much and am grateful for the opportunity I have had to work with such great people.

Here are a few things I have learned during my time as an intern:

  • Ask questions- Although it seemed weird and uncomfortable at first, I never hesitate to ask and ask again if I do not understand an assignment given. Internships are for LEARNING, you learn through experience and asking questions. If you don’t ask questions because you fell like a pest, you might do the assignment or task completely wrong… no bueno!
  • Be early- I was usually one of the first people in the office, and although I have not heard anything from my boss on if that made an impact or not, I am proud of myself for always being reliable and present in the mornings and putting in extra time (even if it was only 5 or 10 minutes).
  • Do as much as possible- before you start an internship, 3-4 months may seem like a long time, but it’s not! Time goes by fast and not having a lot to show for such a short time can be a let down for future employees. Always go the extra mile while working and be willing to be stretched.
  • Be thankful!- Not all college students take advantage of or get to do internships in their field. Be thankful for an opportunity to learn about your career.

Careers at Starbucks

Although after researching for PR, marketing or corporate communication jobs at Starbucks I have not found any openings, I have stumbled upon their benefits. Starbucks is definitely a company I would love to work at. Not only because of their benefits, but the location is great. Seattle is a great city that Starbucks is very proud to be based in. There benefits include: insurance: medical, prescription drug, dental, vision, life, disability; adoption assistance, emergency financial aid, referral and support resources for child and eldercare and the best one… A POUND OF COFFEE EACH WEEK! HELLO!

Starbucks and social media

If Starbucks knows anything (besides making the perfect latte) it is engaging their consumers via social media. They have mastered how to create an interactive community on Facebook. They are open to comments fans make and do not ignore what is written to them. They allow consumers to engage with each other online through interactive posts like:

Coffee and snow go together like _____ and _____.

 

 

But they also allow people to engage in political topics. Starbucks is also known for their political involvement and when they have stated their support for controversies like same sex marriage the fan response is anything but non-existant:

“On January 25, Starbucks posted on its Facebook Page, “We are proud to support Marriage Equality legislation in the Washington State Legislature,” with a link to an article in the Seattle Times. It was followed the same day with: “MARRIAGE=ONE MAN + ONE WOMAN FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God made Adam and EVE not Adam and STEVE!” from a user named Rebecca Curry DeMent of Goshen, Indiana. February 6 and 7 highlight posts from two pro-gay marriage groups urging, in one case for people to declare: “I’m going to Starbucks BECAUSE they support the right thing,” and in the other, to sign a “thank you letter” to Starbucks.”

Twitter is another great way Starbucks benefits from social media. With product announcements, Instagram pictures and  other updates, Starbucks has learned how to engage their followers on a more personal level.

Customers also engage with Starbucks with  tweet mentions to their beloved coffee makers!

 

 

Trouble in the Stars?

Although Starbucks is one of the top food companies in the world, this doesn’t mean they do not face challenges. Starbucks is one outstanding company and has a great reputation because of the way they deal with complaints and challenges.

One challenge they have less grasp around is their competitors. Starbucks has been faced with new competitors with the open of McCafe in the last few years. Dunkin’ Donuts, Nestle and Tim Horton’s are their top competitors.

“It is predicted that specialty coffee will follow the pattern of other fast-foodsegments, in which a few dominant chains gobble up weaker business, but a full-scaleshakeout is still far off (Scarpa).”

Starbucks Campaign Market Analysis

Starbucks is also facing challenges with oversees stores. Their market, although strong, is affected by difference and currency and cultural standards. They lose a lot of their profit in the exchange of currency. Dealing with culture, Ireland is great example of the effect of the sales because of the culture,

“Some of the stores may be overpowering to the cultures they merge into. Forexample, in their Dublin store in Ireland, local coffee shops open mid to late morning,while Starbucks opens much earlier. Some people feel that this takes away from thelaid back atmosphere of the Irish culture (Hammonds).”

Starbucks Campaign Market Analysis

Source: Creative Class

The market affects the sales of coffee because of higher gas prices, minimum credit card payments and a slow housing market are things that can and are affecting Starbucks. But I truly believe, even in times of financial struggle, people still want coffee and are willing to pay money for quality over quantity!