Starbucks Shrugs Off Big Mac Attack

Company refuses to get steamed as rivals move in for the kill
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 11, 2008 3:09 AM CST
A man pulls a cart past the Starbucks store inside the Beachwood Mall in Beachwood, Ohio, last month.    (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)
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(Newser) – So far Starbucks isn't giving two beans about rival efforts to keep the coffee wars piping hot, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports. The latest not-so-subtle salvo—a McDonald's espresso billboard declaring "Four Bucks is Dumb" erected within sight of Starbucks' Seattle headquarters—has yet to meet a response, and execs hint they intend to take the high road.

"We're not going to get sucked into the 'my-coffee-is-better-than-yours' type of coffee conversation," Starbucks' chief marketing officer told investors last week. "We're going to play at a much higher level." Analysts expect attack ads to keep coming as the economy slumps, but believe Starbucks will carry on with its current campaign of selected ads promoting social responsibility.