Commuincation challenge, Research says our customers can't tell our cheaper product from our far more expensive version.

What to do? cloak everything in lush secondary packaging? talk about limited editions or celeb endorsements? mmm Starbucks would appear to be about to make a virture out of the fact, their $1 dollar coffee tastes the same as the $4 version mmm, this is going to be interesting.

Starbucks brews instant coffee for cash strapped customers

byStaff, Brand Republic 13-Feb-09, 09:00

NEW YORK - Starbucks, which built its business on selling $4 cups of coffee, is to offer customers instant or soluble coffee for less than $1, which it claims tastes as good as the real thing.

The Seattle-based retail coffee giant will begin selling an instant variety of coffee, called Starbucks Via, next month at selected stores.

"...Howard Schultz said that people being served the coffee could not tell the difference between instant and fresh brewed...." 

Now I drink a ton of coffee, am also very picky about where and what i order, so I find this at the very least an  intriguing challenge! hats off to Starbucks for giving it a go, especially for flying in the face of conventional brand planning.