Starbucks Drops its Maligned Holiday Red Cups in Favor of Customer Creations

Posted on by Patty Odell

Starbucks, for the first time, looked to its vast loyal customer base to create designs for its 2016 Holiday Red Cups for the Christmas season … and they really came through.

Thirteen designs appear on the cups after more than 1,200 individual submissions were crowdsourced from customers on Instagram from 13 countries in just eight days.

The designs are festive, beautiful, detailed and very creative. They are available starting today in 25,000 Starbuck locations in 75 countries. The much maligned plain red cup will still be available for customers who prefer no holiday decorating.

“We were surprised and inspired by the amount of incredible art submitted by our customers. The designs were beautiful, expressive and engaging,” says Dena Blevins, creative director, Starbucks Global Creative Studio. “We quickly realized there was potential to use the customer-created art for our holiday cups.”

Starbucks has been celebrating the holidays with the festive holiday red cups since 1997.  The brand is also kicking off the holiday season with a sweet promotion: Customers can receive a free holiday beverage Nov. 10 – 14 when placing an order in the afternoon.

“We hope that this year’s red holiday cup designs express the shared spirit of the holidays as told by our customers,” says Starbucks’ global chief marketing officer Sharon Rothstein.

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