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30th October 2015


I’m a self-professed brand geek and love all things branding but whilst I’m sitting in a perfectly air-conditioned Starbucks sipping a very familiar vanilla latte I have a whole new love for branding…

I’m in a foreign land, in far far away Bangkok. After a very hairy experience this morning almost getting conned out of 4,000 baht for an illegal boat taxi, which I didn’t want in the first place, I left the con man before parting with my cash and started walking. I walked and walked and walked… I had been dropped off in only God knows where, this was not on any map I had to hand. Realising I was in some sort of ‘back alley’ area starting feeling very uneasy. There were narrow streets, bikes swishing by and lots of people setting up their markets and all sorts of things. In the sweltering heat slight panic was starting to fill my gut. But then, like a beacon of hope, out of the blue I saw the Starbucks logo. I was safe.

After being greeted by a friendly face and ordering a familiar drink, I was directed to the legal boat taxis which were 15 Baht and phew I was headed back to the beaten track.

It made me realise the emotional connection to a brand and recognising something so easily was a joy. Maybe the power of branding runs a little deeper than we think. I’ve never been so relieved to see a Starbucks logo in all my life.

starbucks branding