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Canada: Rewards help government nudge citizens toward better health

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By: RickFerguson |

Posted on April 4, 2016

Over at TechVibes, writer Jonathan Woods details a sneak peek at Carrot Rewards, a mobile app and reward programme funded in part by the Canadian government and designed to nudge Canadians toward healthier diet and lifestyle choices. Between Carrot Rewards and Justin Trudeau, Canada may now officially be the coolest nation on Earth.

Carrot Rewards is the brainchild of Canadian company Social Change Rewards, founded by former Air Miles executive Andreas Souvaliotis and funded by a combination of public and private venture capital. The Carrot Rewards app, which the company promises is "coming soon," rewards Canadians for answering surveys and responding to offers that encourage healthy diet and activities. Users who respond to these offers earn points in existing loyalty programmes such as Aeroplan, Petro-Points, and Scene.

Money quote in the article from Dilip Soman, Co-Director of Behavioral Economics in Action at Rotman and policy advisor on behavioral economics:

�The Carrot app is an interesting idea. We've known from the prior success of loyalty programmes in marketing that there is a segment of the population that is greatly influenced by reward points. [M]obile technology empowers us to communicate in more behaviourally informed ways and hence influence behaviour to a greater extent than was possible before. It is therefore no surprise that governments (like other organisations) are interested in using mobile technology to reach citizens. Over time, I hope the developers are able to harness the ability to customize reward types and reward schedules as a function of individual characteristics, location, tenure in programme, and success of prior rewards in changing behaviour.�

Soman sounds an awful lot like a loyalty marketer. We wish Social Change Rewards best of luck with the app launch, and we look forward to seeing Canadians engage with the programme to live healthier lifestyles.

The entire article is worth reading; you can find it here.

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