An Example of an Interesting Advertising Venue

I’m always looking out for novel ways of merchandising. Going to my local, but not chain, coffee shop I spied something pretty nifty. Normally, a generic cup of coffee looks, well, generic. Here is an example that we all know.

What did I find at my coffee shop last night? This clever bit of advertising on a previously generic accessory.

To me, this is a wonderful bit of advertising that works for both the advertiser and the coffee shop, if things are done well. Obviously, it is great for the fresh breath people, they put their ads right where people get a case of bad breath, and to be honest, I think a lot of people need that ad-reminder! I hope that this works out well for the coffee shops, where they get these insulators at least free if not get a little stipend from using them.

My one thought about these pieces is that they have a bit of a flaw, and that happens when someone goes to handle the drink. Another concern is that the coupon is kind of unuseable as a coupon. I am sure the bar code is scannable, but I am not sure who would clip this and take it to a store for redemption, but then again, I don’t know any coupon-cutters….

When the customer grabs the drink the ad becomes obscured by the act of holding the beverage. I am sure there’ll be a bit of “gee! what does your drink say!” push when these things first hit the street, but it won’t last long after there’s a lot in the wild. The configuration really only works when a person is not holding the beverage – probably not the best situation for a carry-out item.

I think the better solution is to place advertising on the lid of the drink. The real estate is far smaller but the ad is visible at nearly any time the container is in view, not to mention every time someone drinks out of the container. I made a quick and dirty version of this below, so you can get an idea of what I am getting at.

Detractors might say, hey what if the user takes the lid off? The answer is that they can take the insulator off as well, but I think the number of concentrated views one would get by placing it at the exact point that everyone looks at when taking a drink, is really real estate that’s nearly priceless. If you could get away with it, the best thing to do would be to completely brand-color the lids and get that whole area sort of effect. I can’t see any reason that Solo® couldn’t tint the plastic to any color of the rainbow for the right price. The biggest issue would be how to get it into coffee shops or wherever. Even a less brand-driven establishment might push back on you owning the tops of their coffee, but a nice stipend for carrying it and some good styling and someone could make it happen.

Now, by releasing this to the interwebs, if anyone takes it, I’d like to see a little kick-back!

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