Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
14 August 2019
The Dunkin drive-thru is a testament to brand ignorance
Dunkin Donuts, or Dunkin, or whatever the hell you are supposed to call it, just doesn’t understand how customers interpret its brand. And that detachment is most evident in the bungled Dunkin drive-thru.
Here’s my deal.
This past week, my son, daughter-in-law and myself took a short trek to Raleigh. There, we frequent the nearest Kadampa center as a dose of spiritual serenity for the week. We were a bit early and as such scouted the nearest establishment for a coffee and donut. We hit the Dunkin drive-thru, ordering a batch of coffee with relative ease.
But then came the search for donuts. Bafflingly, not a single donut was listed on the menu board.
What the bloody hell?
I, like a dipshit, asked about various donut flavors (that maybe they didn’t even have or never even made) to which the attendant traipsed back and forth to scour the shelves and inform me they didn’t have that flavor. Finally, I gave up. At the height of agitation, I was very ready for an adrenaline shot of zen.
“What donut shop doesn’t have a listing of its donuts for sale? Especially for those customers hitting a Dunkin drive-thru.”
Getting donuts at a Dunkin drive-thru shouldn’t be so hard
Perhaps this is why Dunkin Donuts dropped the whole Donuts moniker from its name. It’s the justification for it. But its brand is too muffled to be that coy with brand decisions. Despite the name change, we know Dunkin has donuts.
I know I sound like the ravings of a madman, an Andy Rooney complaining about a Dunkin drive-thru that had no donuts on its menu. Pissed that the donut he wanted was out of stock. But that’s not it.
I’m perturbed at the customer process. What donut shop doesn’t have a listing of its donuts for sale? Especially for those customers hitting a Dunkin drive-thru.
While the donut was dropped from the its name, the connotation still remains. Donuts remain the foundation of its brand. Its url is dunkindonuts.com. Its cups still say DD. So did the drive-thru sign. And damn it, they can’t even get the process right.
Take heed, if you are in the customer service industry, do customer service right. If not, you’ll see a once Dunkin customer like me looking for the closest Krispy Kreme instead. A place where the donuts it sells are listed on its drive-thru window. Fancy that as an idea.
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