Savvy store owners in the US are getting with the digital times and implementing mobile loyalty card programs for their customers. A range of new mobile apps are allowing retailers to trade in cardboard and stamps for tracking purchases directly through their customer’s cell phones.
I can’t wait for this concept to pick up in Australia. Imagine a world where you don’t have spend an uncomfortable two minutes at the cash register sorting through the cluttered contents of your wallet. Only to remember that you left your Subway rewards card in your jeans pocket. Which is now in the wash.
Or deal with the frustration of getting to nine out of ten purchase stamps, only for the loyalty card to go missing somewhere between Friday night’s quiet sangria with friends and Saturday morning’s ten-hour journey back from a place you’ve never been and don’t quite recognise – right about the time you could use a free coffee, too.
For retailers, there are other opportunities to encourage consumer loyalty with apps that turn day-to-day chores into games. With the geotargeting and GPS capabilities of modern smartphones, you can get “points” for how many times you go to the post office, supermarket, or dry cleaners. Ten or so points equals a freebie or discount, or you could save them up for bigger and better prizes.
Or even better, status with your fellow game players as you strive to become the “boss” or “king” of Myer, Gloria Jeans or Fitness First. Now there’s an achievement worth striving for – I’m going to be the Grand High Overlord of Luna Park.