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Starbucks taps BBDO as agency of record

SEATTLE The advertising agency that dreamed up Starbuck’s free coffee promotion on Election Day has been named the coffeehouse giant’s agency of record, officials said Monday.

BBDO New York succeeds former ad agency Wieden + Kennedy, based in Portland, Ore., which parted ways with Starbucks in September after four years. Starbucks spent about $60 million on advertising last year.

BBDO wowed Starbucks with its idea that the chain offer free coffee to those who voted on Election Day. However, questions were raised about the legality of offering incentives to vote, so Starbucks expanded the free coffee offer to any customer who requested it on Nov. 4.

Terry Davenport, Starbucks' chief marketing officer, said the promotion helped generate enormous attention for the brand, drove traffic to stores and helped “remind everyone that the connection between Starbucks and its customers is bigger than coffee.”

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