How a Topless Mermaid Made the Starbucks Cup an Icon

She’s a little more modest today than in the ‘70s

Every day, millions of people walk into any of 20,519 Starbucks in 65 countries, and most walk back out with the same thing: a white cardboard coffee cup. Do you know the one? Of course you do. “Starbucks cups have become part of the cultural backdrop, an unconscious reminder that the brand exists,” observed management consultant and business speaker Can Akdeniz. “It’s an extremely powerful piece of packaging.”

@UpperEastRob robert.klara@adweek.com Robert Klara is a senior editor, brands at Adweek, where he specializes in covering the evolution and impact of brands.