National Coffee Day at Dunkin

Practically everyone has heard about National Coffee Day.  Plastered all over twitter were pictures advertising free medium hot or iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts today, September 29, 2014. The sign used the official Dunkin Donuts font and advertised the offer limiting one per customer.


The tweet spread like wildfire with captions like “retweet to save a life” and “spread awareness”.  Countdowns started weeks ago for National Coffee Day at Dunkin, but when the lines started forming today, many were disappointed.  

It turns out Dunkin was only giving out a free hot medium dark roast coffee to introduce their new blend.  The pictures floating around the web were a scam and I, along with millions of others, were incredibly disappointed.

Although this was a disappointing discovery, it was an incredibly smart scheme on Dunkin Donuts’ part.  They knew millions of people would see this advertisement and have the Dunkin brand on their mind.  Even if someone came into a store to get a free coffee, the chances that they would order another item are significantly raised.  You’re there already there so why not? Right?

When I arrived this morning to find I could not get my iced latte for free, I ordered it anyway and paid full price. My friend took advantage of the free hot coffee, but since she hadn’t spent any money, she ordered a muffin because she felt like she was getting so much more for way less money.

How many other people did the same thing?  Did Dunkin Donuts start this false advertising on purpose?  Did they make more or less money today?  So many questions are going through my head, but the main point is that the Dunkin brand is on my mind.  That is all they need to pull in customers–genius marketing!

The main point of this marketing tactic was that even though people were disappointed in the free product being given out, they were not mad enough to walk away from the brand all together.  Dunkin Donuts’ brand is established enough to pull in new and old customers on a daily basis, and today was no exception.

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