After 4 years in market, Peet’s Coffee relaunched Peetnik Rewards, its loyalty program, revamped to offer a greater variety of personalized rewards, faster. Originally launched in 2017, a refreshed app and program went live in Fall 2021 with much fanfare that included a guaranteed-win sweepstakes that ran for 2 weeks.
“From the time of launch to the relaunch, we were consistently looking for customer feedback,” says Lisa Regelman, Head of Loyalty and Growth Marketing at Peet’s Coffee. “What we heard was customers wanted to earn points per dollar spent and have more choice with redemption.”
Regelman shares that the largest change to the program was the switch in point earn rules, and expansion of the reward catalog, both of which came in direct response to their most important stakeholders: their customers. “Peetniks are very passionate about the brand and our product.” The change allows Peet’s Coffee to reward loyal customers for the breadth of their consumption not just per visit, as well as give them more ways to redeem their points. From free beverages, baked goods, breakfast sandwiches, coffee beans or dollars off, the customers get to choose their rewards.
Full program terms and conditions show the new earn and burn rules, with multiple redemption tiers that offer a variety of in-store product rewards and instant savings.
The new program aims to drive increased frequency, as well as increased spend. “We wanted our program to be more motivational and increase the opportunity for customer engagement,” says Regelman. The new program continues to recognize those who have high frequency of visits and just as importantly recognizes other segments of Peetniks, who the brand hopes will be motivated by the speed at which they can now earn rewards. The program rewards high value customers as well as creates more engagement across the board driven by faster access to rewards. The benefit to the customer is a quicker path to a rewards redemption opportunity while achieving frequency, recency, and monetary value results for the brand.
Peet’s Coffee also removed the barrier of automatic conversion of points into a reward, followed by a rewards expiry, which can be a point of friction in the total experience.
Previously, a reward was issued immediately upon earning 15 points and was then timebound by an expiry date for redemption. Pressure to redeem rewards, and lack of control over when and how the customer could redeem the award was a sticking point for many medium or lower frequency customers. Regelman shares that the new program is showing lift across the board, from all segments.
Another important indicator of program penetration and valuation is the lift in reward redemption, which shows that customers understand the program and see its value in the way they use it.
“We cover the entire menu in terms of choice for redemption, including dollars off,” says Regelman, when referring to the wide variety of redemption options. The Increased choice for rewards that are not just free beverages lines up with brand values. “We offer handcrafted coffee and hand roasted beans, so we have that reflected in the loyalty program as well, with our redemption catalog, where it really is customers’ choice.”
Peetnik Rewards is an example of how the customer loyalty program must be an extension of the customer experience of the brand. Peet’s Coffee is known for its coffee bar experience and the delivery of handcrafted drinks, so having a program that now offers a greater variety of personalized rewards shows great alignment with the Peet’s Coffee brand.
Customers can expect to have their needs met in the new program because they were consulted heavily in the process of relaunching. Regelman acknowledges research, surveys, in-depth interviews, and co-creation sessions with passionate Peetniks as some of the tools that helped their team learn what was valuable to their customers and be able to deliver a refreshed program that is focused on personalization.
“The challenge for everyone in this space is how to make the experience meaningful. How do you make the customer’s life easier/better? We’re trying to get there with personalization. The other challenge is how do we take the coffee bar experience and bring it into the app? The Peet’s Coffee magic is what happens in the store, and we wanted to bring that experience into the app.”
The Peet’s Coffee brand personality comes through in the refreshed app and program. From the animations that surprise and delight to making it about great beverages and food, the app puts the Peet’s Coffee product and the point earn experience front and center in the new app.
The relaunch of Peetnik Rewards wasn’t done in a vacuum and leaned heavily on the data from 4 years of program operations. Besides involving customer stakeholders, Peet’s Coffee worked with experts across their team of partners: the app was built by Hathway, the new rules engine and guaranteed win sweepstakes were both managed by Paytronix, and Regelman credits Bond Brand Loyalty for its strategic leadership, in helping shape the new program.
Regelman says Peet’s Coffee is not done yet. “We see the program as a living, breathing thing. This relaunch was just the first step.” The current program rewards in-store only but the longer-term strategy may include extensions into other parts of the Peet’s business.
Not to mention what Regelman and team are building out for experience innovation in the coming years. We can probably expect Peet’s Coffee to continue to brew magic among the universe of Peetniks and continue to incorporate customer feedback to guide program development long term. What these early successes prove is that there is better return on loyalty investments when the customers served are consulted for feedback. Peet’s smartly used customer input to update a highly valued program and make it even more attractive to use.