Degree Type

Honors Capstone Project

Date of Submission

Spring 5-2017

Capstone Advisor

Hua Jiang

Honors Reader

Maria Russell

Capstone Major

Public Relations

Capstone College

Public Communications

Audio/Visual Component


Capstone Prize Winner


Won Capstone Funding


Honors Categories


Subject Categories

Public Relations and Advertising


Over the past few decades, a cup of morning coffee has transformed from a simple supplement, with cream and a dash of sugar, to a daily necessity, luxury and investment. In fact, consumers spent over $74.2 billion on coffee in 2015 alone (The Economic Impact of the Coffee Industry, 2016). Within this billion-dollar industry, a combined 4.3 billion cups are purchased from two coffee powerhouses, Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks Coffee (Lepore, 2011). These industry tycoons can be found brewing beans all day long, serving their daily out-the-door lines of loyal, eager customers. This capstone will take readers on a journey through the history of the coffee bean, the exploding popularity of the coffee shop, the eventual rise of the coffee industry’s two major players, and provide an in-depth analysis of the core promotional and business principles utilized by Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts in appealing to their target audiences. Grab your favorite coffee brew, sit back and enjoy this detailed behind-the-scenes look at why you may prefer one latte over another.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



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