Photo credit: Starbucks

 For many, the festive holiday season starts once Halloween is done, the candle in the jack-o-lantern has fizzled out, and the last trick-or-treater has fallen quietly into a sugar-induced slumber.

For the fans of large coffee chains, the festive season marks the arrival of a holiday-inspired drink menu with LOTS of sugary, syrupy goodness (although did you see my last post about the pumpkin spice latte?!),  and beautifully decorated cups…Oh, the holiday cups!

It seems like each year,  each coffee chains tries to out-do their competition ,  making their cups more colourful,  more festive, well, just MORE.

On November 1st this year, Starbucks launched their holiday season with the arrival of their much-awaited Red Cups…and you could say the response was less than great.  In fact,  the cups were so boring that people have started digging for hidden meaning behind the simplicity of the design (or lack thereof!). 

Seriously,  it’s become this great big ‘thing’ where some people believe that there is a hidden agenda to the lack of festivity on the cups. In a nutshell,  some are trying to claim that Starbucks is trying to sanitise the Christmas out of the holidays. 

If you don’t believe me,  you can read more about the argument here.

I feel badly for Starbucks… According to the head of design for the company,  the simple design was meant to encourage people to express themselves by drawing on the cups,  adding their own creativity. 

Personally I think that’s rather a bit over ambitious for the average harried coffee drinker, rushing in for their life support beverage first thing in the morning to expect people to whip out their colouring pencils and start creating on the side of their scalding hot cuppa joe.

Now, I may be relatively new to the game of business branding and promotions, particularly around the holiday season, but what I do know is that, at this time of the year especially, people like things to be familiar, easy, comfortable, and dare I say,  nostalgic of years past.
You know what they say… There is no such thing as bad publicity! 

At the end of the day,  they’re cups…for coffee. Coffee cups.  Coffee cups meant to add a little bit of holiday cheer (as well as demonstrate your allegiance with a coffee shop!). But really,  they are cups.

And, actually, I happen to think that the plain red cups are THE perfect blank canvas to compliment our new festive range  Couva Coffee Couture Cup Covers! Not only do they keep your coffee hotter for longer,  but they’ll cover up some of that boring redness!