Marius on Strategy and Communication

What it says on the tin

A Little Excitement with your Latte?

Inspired by Adam Ferrier’s recent post about gambling and religion, here’s a quick thought:


I buy a lot of coffee and so have many coffee-club and loyalty cards. Problem is, my drawer at home is full of cards – each of them stamped just once; all of which I forget to bring when buying coffee.

I bet I’m not the only customer that these cards fail to turn into a loyal one. If cafes are serious about loyalty, why not give every tenth coffee away for free, but to random customers?

When the customer is about to pay, they would learn whether their coffee is on the house. An algorythm in the register will mix it up – it could happen to three in a row, or to no one for half an hour. A screen could tell customers the odds of winning calculated from how many have been won so far that day.

Gimmicks like ‘the next person after you in line just won a free coffee’; or, ‘give a free coffee to someone behind you in the line’ could be used. The offers would include the whole order, and thus be an incentive to order several coffees or larger sizes. Customers wouldn’t have to bring those loyalty cards while the brand facilitates interaction and charity between the customers.

The 10% possibility of a free coffee is likely to become the deciding factor when choosing where to go every morning, especially in the CBD and areas littered with coffee shops – most of whose coffees taste and cost the same.

This method could work well for other loyalty program retailers as well. Another alternative to loyalty cards is to register each customer’s mobile phone number – which could also be utilised as a marketing tool for special offers, further contributing to building loyalty.

What other product categories could employ this tactic?


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This entry was posted on May 24, 2013 by in Uncategorized.
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