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Starbucks taps mobile social media for Frappuccino promotion

Coffee giant Starbucks Coffee Co. is running the Frappuccino Happy Hour promotion, a location-based multichannel campaign offering discounts to consumers who express brand loyalty on social networks.

The Frappuccino Happy Hour promotion is being highlighted across all of Starbucks? channels, including Twitter, Facebook, Brightkite, foursquare, YouTube, MyStarbucksIdea.com and Starbucks.com, along with an in-store promotion. Brightkite users have the opportunity to earn a Starbucks badge if they check into Starbucks during the national Frappuccino Happy Hour promotion from 3-5 p.m.

?They can add this badge to their profile to show their friends how much they love Starbucks,? said Lisa Passé, spokeswoman for Starbucks, Seattle. ?We're really excited to be trying out new and innovative programs with location-based services like Brightkite.

?Finding new ways to connect with our customers in our stores and online, guides the progression of our social media strategy,? she said. ?What?s great about Brightkite is that it links the real time in store experience to the online community.?

Starbucks recently unveiled the largest combined mobile payments and loyalty program in the United States (see story).

Mobile social network Brightkite began ramping up when it acquired Limbo last year (see story).

Brightkite future
Brightkite has been working with both Starbucks and its agencies over the past few months to pull together some locally targeted and time-sensitive brand integrations across the mobile social network.

The integration around the Frappuccino Happy Hour launched May 7 and runs through Sunday, May 16.

Brightkite users that check-in or post at any Starbucks during happy hour?3-5 p.m.?get a half-priced Frappuccino and unlock various features and rewards such as the ability to browse and pick their favorite Frappuccino drink and get a corresponding badge.

Once they have picked their favorite Frappuccino flavor, they can add it as a badge on their Brightkite profile.

All of this is done within the Brightkite iPhone application and these features are only available if they are checked in at a Starbucks, or during happy hour.

Here is a screengrab of the Starbucks integration with Brightkite:

The coffee chain has approximately 11,000 stores in the United States and each has its own unique neighborhood community of customers.

Starbucks is working with Brightkite with the goal of strengthening these communities and to provide both real-world and virtual rewards for loyal customers.

Brightkite is working on programs for other Starbucks brands in addition to Frappuccino that have yet to be announced.

?Brightkite offers brands a way to reach consumers on the move in particular places or times of the day that other media cannot reach,? said Rob Lawson, cofounder/chief marketing officer of Brightkite, Burlingame, CA.

?We have run location and time targeted programs for the Gap, Best Buy, Jack in the Box, Nissan, Verizon and many other merchants, but this is the biggest brand integration we've done and is the first to offer badges that the user can customize based on their brand choices, in this case, their favorite Frappuccino,? he said.