The gamble: Starbucks betting on customer loyalty


Starbucks Coffee will test the loyalty of their customers in a staggering revamp to their Rewards Program.

Yet, the question is – Does a company – as successful as Starbucks – fear customer dissatisfaction?

A company built on providing outstanding customer experience ( ‘The Starbucks Experience’ by J. Michelli) where drinks can be returned if you are not entirely ‘happy with it’ will face social media ‘bullying’ over their latest move.

Rewards programs are built to encourage customer loyalty, rather than have loyal patrons (put down their Venti, no foam latte) throw their arms in the air in revolt, as many have gone to twitter to voice their ‘disheartening’ thoughts on the matter.

The keenest loyalists of the big-chain coffee brand are at the biggest risk, with Gold Members now needing more than US$62.50 to get a free drink, and more aggravation to maintain the coveted Gold status.

If you’re a lover of the $2 filtered coffee, things look glum with the newly ‘thought out’ rewards program.

Good news for those 65 million plus Starbucks coffee drinkers without a loyalty card – the queue to get your coffee will be significantly reduced without teenagers opting to buy 11 drinks separately – all for the sake of those golden stars.


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