Case Studies: Using the metaverse, NFTs and Web3 to boost customer loyalty
Starbucks “The Third Place” - Odyssey Loyalty Program
Starbucks announced their Web3 loyalty program called “Odyssey” centred around earning, collecting and trading NFTs that unlock “immersive coffee experiences”. The program is aimed not only at Starbucks Rewards members, but also their employees who they refer to as “partners”. Starbucks envisions Starbucks Odyssey as a way for its most loyal customers to earn a broader set of rewards while also building community.
For the first time we are connecting our Starbucks Rewards loyalty program members not just to Starbucks, but to each other. Leveraging Web3 technology will allow our members to access experiences and ownership that was not possible before. Starbucks Odyssey will transcend the foundational benefits that our Starbucks Rewards members have come to love, and unlock digital, physical and experiential benefits that are uniquely Starbucks. By integrating into the Starbucks Rewards ecosystem and grounding the experience in coffee, connection and community, we are entering the Web3 space differently than any other brand, while deepening our members’ connection to Starbucks. Our vision is to create a place where our digital community can come together over coffee, engage in immersive experiences, and celebrate the heritage and future of Starbucks.” (Brady Brewer, Starbucks EVP & CMO).
Odyssey is the Web3 extension of their existing rewards program
The waitlist opened 12.09.2022
Members of the rewards program can log in and participate in “Journeys” that are fun, interactive games and challenges
These activities are designed to deepen the knowledge of Starbucks and coffee
NFTs called “journey stamps” are given to members who complete journeys
Limited-edition digital stamps are also available through the Odyssey marketplace for an “experience a fun and easy way for members to access this new technology and claim an ownership stake in their loyalty to Starbucks.“
Some sales revenue from these will go towards causes selected in consultation with rewards program members and employees.
Each stamp NFT is worth a certain number of points based on its rarity
By acquiring and collecting stamps, rewards program members can unlock “access to unique benefits and experiences that have never been offered before”.
These could include: trips to the Starbucks coffee farm in Costa Rica, exclusive events at ‘Reserve Roasteries’, limited edition merchandise in collaboration with artists, metaverse experiences such as virtual espresso martini-making classes and simple in-store redeemable items such as free drinks.
“The company’s success with its industry-leading Starbucks Rewards loyalty program, mobile payment and ordering, and Wi-Fi access in its stores has taught the company how to engage customers at scale to unlock opportunities using emerging technology. Through this approach, the company will provide easier access to Web3 experiences and, in the process, introduce a new, next-generation loyalty program model to the world … As Starbucks Odyssey evolves, the company will continue to gather feedback from members and Starbucks partners, which will help shape the future of this innovative, new experience for Starbucks Rewards.”
“Starbucks Odyssey is one of the ways we are reinventing the Third Place to meet our customers wherever they are – in a Starbucks store, on-the-go, or online. We are creating an accessible, digital Third Place community enabled by Web3 technology where Starbucks Rewards members and our partners can connect through unique experiences and come together around the love for coffee” (Brady Brewer, Starbucks EVP & CMO)
Fun debate on the merits of the program
The Starbucks Odyssey Loyalty will launch later this year after initial testing with selected waitlist applicants.
Other examples of loyalty programs expanding via the metaverse, NFTs and Web3
Loyalty program worked in the way that early-adopters of their NFT collectibles were given evolving utility for their NFTs, which meant that utility either increased or became more valuable. Holders were also airdropped more (and more) NFTs, each with their own unique utility as well. RTFKT have so far been leaders at creating more value for purchasers.
Nike is working with RTFKT to build their Animus metaverse for 2023.