What the Largest Coffee Retailers Are Doing On Their Facebook Pages

With about 27,000 coffee shops in America, and 11,000 or so accounted for by chains, it is no surprise that there are dozens – even hundreds – of Facebook Pages dedicated to coffee serving establishments. In this post we’ll cover coffee shop chains, looking at each of the five largest pages and what they’re doing well, or not. In a subsequent post, we’ll feature local coffee shop Pages.


With over 5.1 million Fans, Starbucks – as it is in business – is far and away the most dominant coffee shop chain on Facebook. In our previous coverage of Starbucks we’ve detailed how the company has used Facebook, and especially its Page, to become one of the top brands on the site (currently at #7, about 1,000 Fans behind Megan Fox).

Starbucks VIA Facebook Page Contest

Currently, Starbucks is promoting its Via instant coffee packets through a vague contest, asking people to become Fans, upload pictures and write on its Wall without any real clear incentive. This is a rare lapse in what is usually a stellar page, one that Facebook itself honored earlier this year.


We’ve included McDonald’s in this post because it dedicates a tab on its Page to McCafe — which, if you haven’t been in a McDonald’s since childhood, is their espresso line.

McDonald's McCafe Facebook Page tab

The McCafe tab runs a “McCafe Theater” which sends you to an interactive Flash page on McDonald’s website and which isn’t all that interesting. However, with over 1,453,695 Fans, anytime that McDonald’s wishes to highlight McCafe, they have a strong channel to do so.

Dunkin’ Donuts

Next up is another chain that really isn’t a coffee shop, but Dunkin’ Donuts is a caffeine fixture on the East Coast and the Page is quickly approaching the million Fan mark (currently 957,570). Two things that we like about this Page: a nice looking promotion for free coffee for a year; and the very inventive Fan of the Week pictures.

Dunkin' Donuts Fan Page

The Fan of the Week is displayed right under the logo on the Page homepage, so we imagine that quite a few Fans have uploaded a picture of themselves to the Wall (which is the only requirement to be chosen). After seeing this, we would encourage just about any brand to do the exact same thing.

Tim Hortons

We’ve decided to include Tim Hortons in this list even though most of their stores are in Canada, but with 460,809 Fans they come in as the second largest solely-coffee-shop Page, which is significant (also, they have a number of rather large unofficial Pages that will at some point most likely be rolled into the official one, so they could see a large spike at some point). Overall their Page is pretty straightforward, but we did get a kick out of their Curling Story Contest tab.

Tim Hortons Facebook Page

The Coffee Bean

The Coffee Bean, which currently has 65,183 Fans, has a pretty informative Page that includes a store locator (which all the chains should put front and center on their Pages), a “Flavor Finder” which helps fans to find the perfect bean for their tastes, and a “Buy Online” tab which is just an iFrame of The Coffee Bean’s website, which is a smart idea for any brand.

And More…

Among the rest of the top coffee chain Pages are Peet’s (30,527 Fans), Seattle’s Best (3,824 Fans and which is also owned by Starbucks), Dunn Bros Coffee (3,674), Port City Java (1,822 Fans) and Tully’s (1,593 Fans).

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Leave a Reply

6 Responses to “What the Largest Coffee Retailers Are Doing On Their Facebook Pages”

  1. dave goldblatt says:

    Don’t forget about Philz! Super popular in the bay area. More fans than Port City or Tully’s. http://www.facebook.com/pages/San-Francisco-CA/Philz-Coffee/31131817744

  2. Math says:

    I’m confused–don’t all of these “upload a photo / post on our wall” contests violate section 3 of the promotions guidelines? As an agency, we’ve been advising our clients that users can only enter promotions through apps (as that’s what the guidelines seem to say). Is my reading of that section too strict?

  3. Louis says:

    “Currently, Starbucks is promoting its Via instant coffee packets through a vague contest, asking people to become Fans, upload pictures and write on its Wall without any real clear incentive.”

    If they did offer an incentive wouldn’t that be in violation of Facebook’s recent terms? In particular the one that states there should be no incentives offered to fans to upload content etc.

  4. Chad Catacchio says:

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the info on Philz. We based our list on the top coffee shop chains in North America, and while you’re correct that they do have more Fans, Port City has over 50 locations and Tully’s has over 100 locations in the US, so that’s how we made the list (actually we had to leave off Caribou Coffee which has over 300 locations and an unofficial Page of over 40,000 Fans because they don’t have an official Page that we could find). Perhaps we can include Philz in our local coffee shops post coming out later this week.

  5. Chad Catacchio says:

    Math & Louis,

    Thank you for your comments. Starbucks is running their contest through an app, which is what Facebook has said is required, and we assume that they have received prior permission to run this contest, which is also required by Facebook. That said, the language they use in the app is pretty vague.

    With Dunkin’ Donuts, it would seem that since there is no promotion/sweepstakes associated with being the Fan of the Week, that Facebook is allowing this (and has been for 8 months). Both their free coffee for a year and Maurice tab (which incidentally seems to have launched since we posted this) are also both apps, so again, this is allowed by Facebook.

  6. Revue de blogs – Semaine 48/2009 « Digital Reputation Blog says:

    [...] Toys”R”Us Explodes on Facebook : de plus en plus d’entreprises font appel aux entreprise pour promouvoir leurs produits. Autre exemple : Les chaines de cafés. [...]

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