6 Things ‘Dunkin’ Is Telling Us With Their Rebrand

Ben Kissam
Aug 13 · 3 min read
photo credit: dunkindonuts.com (Licensed Under Fair Use).

1. They’re Confused About Their New Name, Too

They dropped ‘Donuts’ from the name so people would see Dunkin’ as more than a place to get your morning coffee. But the new name — ‘Dunkin’— makes no sense.

What are we dunking? Is Dunkin’ a person? And why in the world would you keep the apostrophe?

2. They Actually Want Us to Run on Dunkin’

In an effort to ward off parasitic Millennials who call themselves digital nomads, the new Dunkin’ is really leaning into the idea that Americans should “run on Dunkin’”.

To prove it, their new store design boasts a bold new feature: almost no seats.

Don’t worry: you’re allowed to stand at their community tables. White, shiny, and absent of decor, these tables, that look like Ikea standing desks you bought at a garage sale, conjure up fond memories of that time you visited your crazy aunt in the loony bin.

And if that’s not enough of a hint, many locations now cap their WiFi at 20 minutes. All to ensure you, well, get the message: this is not a fucking cafe.

I mean, you can’t blame them. Have you been inside a Starbucks recently?


3. The Employee Uniforms Say They Think We’re Awesome, But…

New Dunkin’ swapped out those ugly brown polo t-shirt uniforms for t-shirts with fun, relatable messages like “Drink Coffee. Be Awesome” and “Fueled By Positive Energy”.

The only problem: the same people who worked at Dunkin’ Donuts still work at Dunkin’.

I don’t know about your Dunkin’ employees, but the smug looks I get don’t suggest their employees think I’m awesome. Nor does the guy selling drugs in the parking lot. Though to be fair, he does seem fueled by something. I just don’t think it’s “positive energy”.

Props to Dunkin’ for still trying to make brown work, though.

4. They Know Dunkin’ Donuts Purists Are Pissed

Touch screen ordering kiosks, fancy drinks, fewer donut options. That’s a lot of new stuff. And at least one group — people who call themselves “Dunkin’ Donuts purists”— are pissed!

Thankfully, these “purists” are just grouchy people from the Northeast’s least desirable states, like New Hampshire and Connecticut. And in New England, where Dunkin’ outnumbers Starbucks 10 to 1, people are notoriously pissed off anyway. If it wasn’t this, they’d be upset at something else.

The Dunkin’ rebrand helps them forget how terrible the weather is ten months out of the year.

5. They’re Finally Admitting Selling Tuna Fish Was A Bad Idea

Dunkin’ cut half their donuts and dropped ten other menu items. Like McDonalds, they say fewer options ensures customers don’t get confused when ordering.

(Insert your joke here.)

Sadly, fan-favorites like the peach flavor shot and the tuna fish sandwich didn’t make the cut. What a shame. I can’t be only one missing that dark roast-Starkist combo. Nothing screams ocean fresh like Dunkin’ Donuts.

6. Bar Taps Are Hot Right Now

Perhaps the most interesting part of the rebrand is their new bar tap system. These taps send a confusing message. One that runs counter to what loyal customers know and love about Dunkin’ coffee: that it's kind of disgusting.

Typically reserved for microbrews and kombucha, bar taps are supposed to add to your experience. That way you can’t get mad when the beer cost $9. Don’t you see the foamy head? Pay up!

Maybe it’s just me, but when I see iced coffee poured out of a bar tap at Dunkin’, I panic. Now I have to pretend that, at first, it didn’t look like they were pouring it from a sink.


Medium humor. Large laughs.

Ben Kissam

Written by

Follow my comedy list series, “Oh, The People You’ll Meet”: coachk.co/the-people-youll-meet



Medium humor. Large laughs.

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