Sunday, 15 September 2013

Dunkin' Donuts Returns to London as Coffee Culture Continues

US-based Dunkin' Donuts has been marketing doughnuts and coffee, with some menu additions, since 1950. Today, it has 10,000 franchised doughnut shops worldwide and also owns other brands, including Baskin-Robbins ice cream, that are popular beyond North America. The company has sales and profit momentum and big marketing plans for future growth.

During the 1990s, Dunkin' opened franchised doughnut shops in UK markets but closed them to concentrate on more profitable opportunities. It has expanded its Baskin-Robbins shops in the UK but, until now, has not marketed doughnuts again in the UK.

Very soon, Dunkin' Donuts plans to return to the UK with 50 new franchised doughnut shops throughout London. The timing is right, says Dunkin's management, because of the established strength of the coffee culture in the UK and because of Dunkin's expanded menu offerings, including breakfast and lunch sandwiches.

Specifically, the head of Dunkin' Donuts is targeting consumers who might otherwise go to Starbucks or McDonald's for coffee or breakfast/lunch. This time around, Dunkin' must carefully differentiate itself to effectively compete with Krispy Kreme, another US-based chain of doughnut shops that entered the UK a few years ago.

What role will mobile marketing play in Dunkin's strategy to return to London?

In the US, the company is promoting its easy-pay mobile app that not only speeds up transactions, it also gives users access to exclusive mobile offers (see ad).

Starbucks UK already has an easy-pay mobile app for iPhones and Android phones.

So it would make sense for Dunkin's London stores to offer mobile options when they open, don't you think?