09 April 2023 |

Dunkin’ 🫐

By Ari Murray

Dunkin’ Donuts just does it for me. We’ll talk marketing in a second, but here’s my Dunkin’ order that nobody asked for but that everyone should try:

Okay, marketing time. There’s a lot we can learn from Dunkin’, but let’s start here with these 2:


Have you ever tried to send a Starbucks gift card? I have. Do you know what happens every single time? I fill out all of the info (within the app), and then I press send. And then it doesn’t immediately send. Oh no, that would be too easy. Instead, it sends within the next SEVERAL HOURS – this always depends. That makes instant gratification really hard. If I’m sending someone coffee, the odds that I want that to happen the exact second I hit send? Really high. 

But with my beloved Dunkin’, gift cards are as easy as 1, 2, text. INSTANT. Go right now and audit your gifting flow. Checkout on your own website with a gift card and make sure the following are available:

🫐: A digital gift card option 

🫐: The ability to choose the exact dollar amount of the gift card – this matters because for example I was buying a friend a gift card to The Bar (a cute sweatshirt brand), but the increments went like this: $25, $50, $200. I knew the item she wanted, but I didn’t know the color. The item was $68. How does a $50 gift card help me? How does a $200 gift card help me? Answer: they don’t. I had to scrap the plan and switch to Anine Bing and get her a sweatshirt from there, because I knew her size and color of choice. 

This isn’t a niche example. The $68 product that I was trying to buy from The Bar is their hero SKU – it’s VIRAL. I think if they went in and audited their gift card options, they’d realize that by missing out on a $75 or $100 gift card option, they’ve essentially made it impossible to gift that sweatshirt. This is a small detail that matters. Fix it on your site if anything similar is going on.

🫐: The ability to add a gift note. Digital gift cards aren’t sexy. It’s not the most personal of presents. A sweet note helps here. No note? Big problem. 

🫐: The ability to send a gift card INSTANTLY. Check how long it takes for you to receive the gift card (literally checkout and buy one). If it’s not happening right then and right now, adjust please. 


Big brands have big budgets. But long before Ben Affleck was in Dunkin’s Super Bowl commercial he was a walking Dunkin’ poster boy. It’s the Boston in him. (If you can’t tell, Ben Affleck is my celebrity crush – what a cutie!) 

Anywho, by the time Ben was on the payroll, he was so known for drinking and loving Dunkin’ that Dunkin’ was able to stand out from the 500 other brands that employed a celeb for their Super Bowl ad. Because this wasn’t a rent-a-celeb moment. This was A LONG TIME COMING.

Apply that to your next influencer or celeb spokesperson choice. Please, please try to choose someone who has already been consuming and using your brand. The ad then becomes a full-circle-moment. Worth rooting for! 


🫐: If Paige Lorenze were to partner with Sephora or RH or Rao’s or Dove or Birkenstock

🫐: If Arielle Charnas were to partner with The Row

🫐: If Taylor Swift were to partner with Versace as the face of the brand (she’s wearing custom Versace on tour currently). 

All of the above are giving Ben Afflect for Dunkin’. That is what we’re going for.