• About Tom Dougherty

    Tom Dougherty CEO, Stealing Share

    Tom Dougherty is the President and CEO of Stealing Share, Inc., and has helped national and global brands such as Lexus, IKEA and Tide steal market share over his 25-year career.

    An often-quoted source on business and brands, he has been featured recently by the New York Times and CNN, discussing topics ranging from television to Apple to airlines.

    Tom also regularly speaks at conferences as a keynote and break-out speaker. To find out more on inviting him to your speaking engagement and view a video of him speaking, click here.

    You can also reach him via email attomd@stealingshare.com.

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Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte is real

It’s that time of year again.

The time when everywhere you look, the artificially concocted blend of pumpkin spice has been added to everything you eat and drink.

The pumpkin spice is real.
The pumpkin spice is real.

The pile of goods sold with the fake melange of pumpkin spice is absurd. That’s why when I read Starbucks was going all in with a natural pumpkin spice, I took notice.

Natural ingredients are emerging in the QSR industry. 

A latte with real pumpkin in it. What on Earth they think up next?

All snark aside, the Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte is, in actuality, a part of a radical trend occurring in the Quick Service Restaurant industry; a topic we’ve spent much time deliberating on at Stealing Share.

This simple switch by Starbucks is an acknowledgment of the public’s desire to eat healthier food. It’s why Panera has recently trashed 150 artificial ingredients from it’s menu.

It’s also why chains like McDonald’s and Taco Bell are trying their best to come up with alternatives to the antibiotic laden foods that have riddled each menu. But that’s not working to so well either.

And so Starbucks too has joined the fresh food club.

Starbucks should fix all artificial ingredients, not just one at a time. 

My hope is that Starbucks quickly sees the benefit in having natural pumpkin spice in its lattes, and opts to fix the entire menu quickly.

In my eyes, an establishment like Starbucks should recognize that it is already seen as a place that offers you the freshest and best ingredients. It does not have permission to be a McDonalds, Burger King or Taco Bell.

By doing so, rather than snipping the dog’s tail an inch of the time, the public won’t feel like they’ve been duped with artificial ingredients and flavors.

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