Starbucks’ travel ban protest backfires dramatically

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On Jan. 29, in protest of President Trump’s temporary travel ban, Starbucks CEO Howard Shultz declared the company would hire 10,000 refugees over five years — a measure consumers did not take lightly.

Shultz announced his refugee-hiring plan in a letter to employees which, when made public, moved Trump supporters to call for a boycott.

Since Shultz’s announcement, consumer sentiment toward Starbucks has taken a big hit, falling two-thirds from Jan. 29 to Feb. 13 and has yet to recover, according to YouGov BrandIndex’s Buzz Score.

BrandIndex says this boycott is different because both measures tracked — consumer sentiment toward a company and their willingness to buy the brand — are on the decline.

Since Jan. 29, consumer sentiment toward Starbucks has fallen from a rating of 12 to 4, and consumer willingness to buy from the brand went from 30 percent to a low of 24 percent.

YouGov BrandIndex CEO Ted Marzilli said, “Consumer perception dropped almost immediately.”

He also explained that the decrease in willingness to purchase is significant, statistically. “That would indicate the announcement has had a negative impact on Starbucks and might indicate a negative impact on sales in the near term.”

CNBC reported that another analysis by Credit Suisse indicates Starbucks’ announcement has had a negative effect on recent sales and may keep hurting them in the immediate future.

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H/T: The Daily Mail

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