Industry News | April 27, 2010

What Flavor Preference Says About Personality

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Starbucks Coffee is celebrating the introduction of three new Starbucks ice cream coffee-free flavors, inspired by popular beverages from its coffeehouses, with a national study uncovering what Americans’ ice cream flavor preferences say about their personalities. Starbucks versions of classic vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry flavors—Vanilla Bean Frappuccino, Signature Hot Chocolate, and Strawberries & Crème Frappuccino ice creams—help to extend consumers’ Starbucks Experience outside its retail stores.

Starbucks ice cream commissioned StrategyOne and Food-ology researcher and behaviorial food expert Juliet A. Boghossian to author the “What Flavor Are You?” survey, helping to uncover surprising findings about Americans’ ice cream preferences and what their favorite flavor says about them.

“The seemingly simple preference for vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry ice cream says a lot more about us than you might think,” Boghossian says. “Uncovering facets of our personality can inspire us to evolve and re-define the way we see ourselves and our behavior within our most important relationships.”

Key findings include the fact that vanilla lovers are more likely than those who prefer chocolate or strawberry to call themselves risk takers, while strawberry and chocolate lovers are the most likely to say they’re shy. Men are more likely than women to prefer strawberry ice cream, and strawberry lovers are most likely to be free-spirited hip-hop fans, while those in camp chocolate prefer to kick back with a good book.

Some 77 percent of Americans agree, “Amidst all the trendy flavors, I always come back to the classics,” and 56 percent of Americans say their ideal ice cream experience is eating ice cream while on their couch. Finally, chocolate and vanilla lovers are more likely to visit a coffeehouse on a regular basis, and when visiting a coffeehouse, chocolate and strawberry fans like meeting up with friends—vanilla fans are more likely to enjoy some quiet time with a book or studying.
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