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Starbucks will be adding some changes to its reward program, which is among the most innovative ways a business can keep customers coming back.
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has revealed that Web3 will become integral to the company’s popular rewards program moving forward.
“We have been working on a very exciting new digital initiative that builds on our existing industry-leading digital platform in innovative new ways,” said Schultz.
“All centered around coffee and – most importantly – loyalty.”
The disclosure came on Tuesday during Starbucks’ third quarter 2022 call.
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A unique experience
According to Schultz, Starbucks will unveil the new digital initiative on September 13 at its annual Investor Day event in Seattle.
The initiative enables Starbucks to build on the current rewards engagement model while introducing new ways to emotionally engage customers by expanding the third-party digital community approach and offering a more comprehensive range of rewards.
Schultz shared that the rewards will include unique experiences and digital collectibles as a reward and community-building element.
“This will create an entirely new set of digital network effects that will attract new customers and be accretive to existing customers in our core retail stores,” he explained.
Employees have not been very optimistic about the coffee company’s relationship with Web3 initiatives.
During a May presentation focused on NFTs, an employee named Mark voiced his opposition to the plan, citing the environmental impact of NFTs.
“Blockchain, whether it’s proof of stake or proof of work, is not planet positive,” he said.
“It is going to destroy the planet… and it makes me, as a technologist, and I’m not the only one, very worried about that – that this company would go in that direction.”
“I don’t want to feel this way about Starbucks.”
Mark also pointed out that despite being advertised as inclusive, NFTs are more exclusive.
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Starbucks and Blockchain
This won’t be the first time Starbucks has dived into the blockchain scene, as they started a bean-to-cup traceability project four years ago.
The project aims to support small farmers.
Whether customers, employees and investors will embrace the Web3 initiative remains to be seen, but Howard Schultz has set it up as part of a more extensive planned transformation for Starbucks.
“We are looking forward to fully showcasing the power and the opportunity of our reinvention plan,” he said.
Previous reward experience
The plans may not be too much for Starbucks Rewards members, who discuss the program and its possible changes.
The last significant changes to the program took place in 2019, encouraging customers to express their grievances on social networks.
The change involves Starbucks changing the star rating required for free food and drink.
Since then, the rewards program has attracted over 10 million members; Each change affects more people.
Starbucks teases Web3 updates to its popular rewards program