Starbucks is selling a lifestyle, man! This is just one of the stunning assertions in a new book, Everything but the Coffee: Learning About America from Starbucks, by Bryant Simon, director of American studies at Temple University in Philadelphia. Simon tells KYW he spent 15 hours a week in 425 Starbucks stores, mostly in the Philly area, and came to the conclusion that people get something other than coffee from Starbucks - they get treats!
Simon tells KYW it’s not just about the joe:
“For instance, we had this real need for community, we had a real need for safety, we had this real need for predictability, we had this need to give ourselves treats.”
Also, Starbucks speaks to us, per the book blurb:
It shows that Starbucks speaks to a deeply felt American need for predictability and class standing, community and authenticity, revealing that Starbucks’ appeal lies not in the product it sells but in the easily consumed identity it offers.
One large - er, Venti! - steaming cup of easily consumed identity, right this way!