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Game of Thrones impact for Starbucks will likely disappoint

6 months ago by Joshua Fruhlinger in Markets

Product placement and marketing professionals are buzzing about a coffee cup that accidentally showed up in an episode of "Game of Thrones" last weekend. Social media lit up with stills of a coffee cup — that looked to many to have the iconic Starbucks ($NASDAQ:SBUX) logo on its side — sitting on a table in front of Queen Daenerys.

Many of those professionals expect dividends in the way of brand equity and ultimately sales for Starbucks. So far, however, the gaff has proven to move the needle for Starbucks just a little. At least, if Facebook, the world's largest social network, has anything to say about it.

That's because mentions of Starbucks are certainly up in the past two days, but not to a degree that signals an incoming fiscal rush.

Over the weekend and into Monday (after the episode in question aired), mentions of Starbucks on Facebook jumped from 176,000 to 222,000. While that's an appreciable uptick, it's not out of the ordinary for Starbucks, which regularly sees movement in mentions based on news cycles and product launches.

In fact, its biggest spike in Facebook mentions since 2017 occurred in July 2017 when the BBC reported that there was fecal bacteria found in iced drinks at some UK Starbucks locations.

So, while the mentions and activity for Starbucks as a result of an errant coffee cup on the set of a major TV show may create some buzz, it apparently doesn't beat out a little poop in some iced coffee.

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Joshua Fruhlinger

Joshua has been writing about technology, lifestyle, and business for over 20 years. He's one of the original writers and editors for Engadget, and still writes a...

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