They say you can fool all the people some of the time, but if you are running a customer loyalty program you had better be careful, consumers are not as easily duped as you might believe. For instance, many retail stores raise their prices for non-loyalty customer card holders, and then give their cardholders what should be the regular price and pretend they are getting a good deal.
Is this what is happening at Starbucks now? Indeed, I am going as a customer I am going to end up getting the shaft with their latest new customer loyalty program. Let me explain, you see, I generally go to Starbucks every day and buy a Venti White Mocha Frappachino. With my current gold card, I save at 10% and that equates to $175.00 per year, plus my free squirts of toffee nut, and hazel nut.
With this new program, I am going to get a free drink every 15 drinks I buy, that is about 24 free drinks per year, at about $4.00 so I will save $96.00, But before I saved about $175.00 to $200 depending on how many lbs. of coffee I bought for friends for gifts. Now, if I subtract the $25.00 for my current gold card, then that is $150.00 savings, now I only get $96.00
Their new plan also has free WiFi, but I already get WiFi due to my card usage, and I don’t drink coffee, I drink Frappachinos, so the “free coffee deals” that they claim come with the new program don’t help me, instead they are hurting a brand loyalist here who has been to some 3,000 of their stores. Thanks a lot. The reality is that Starbucks doesn’t really care about me or their customers, and they’ve recently raised the prices too.
Indeed, this new they also have been up-selling everyone this new VIA Instant coffee, yes, me too, every time I go into buy my Frappachinos. What Starbucks really needs to do is to apologize to their best customers instead of trying to pull a fast one over on them. In fact, this is one more corporate “customer loyalty” case study of how not to do your company’s marketing. So, please consider all this.