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Hatch Comes Out of The Gate Sprinting

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By: Mike Giambattista, CLMP |

Posted on May 1, 2018

Dan Gloede is someone to pay attention to. If we had “people to watch” section at The Wise Marketer (we don’t) then Dan would certainly have a place on it. Dan is the CEO of Hatch, a brand new broad-partner loyalty platform that has been under development for the past two years.

By Mike Giambattista

First, a little about the platform and why we think Hatch is poised to take some serious ground in the fuel / C-store space in the near term. In order to do that though, we need to take a look at Hatch’s predecessor of sorts, Belly. Claiming some 7 million registered customers at more than 8,500 establishments, Belly’s easy-to-use platform found fast traction at small chains and thousands of single shops around the country.

The key to their steep growth curve had to do with a platform that’s simple for both merchants and customers to use and which is scalable enough to support thousands of one-off businesses. Think about the current loyalty platform landscape for a moment and you’ll recognize the uniqueness and the challenge of that task.

I spoke with Dan recently, just ahead of the announcement of their first live engagement with Drop-Tank and Marathon. As the former CEO of Belly, he had been elbow deep in the strategy, development and growth of the platform but had wanted to find a way to deliver the same easy-to-use concept, along with big data capture & analytics to enterprise-level organizations. It took a job change and almost two years to get there.

What Gloede and his teammates have come up with really isn’t a platform at all – it’s more of a framework that companies can bolt on-to. It allows them ultimate flexibility in integration, a built-in toolset that can be rapidly customized according to user needs, and soon, an AI-powered “brain” that is constantly processing and learning ever more nuanced customer behavior patterns.

To hear Gloede talk about it, most retailers really don’t know their customers, and their current tech stack makes it difficult to understand their behavior - and he’s got the chops to make statements like that.

“Hatch empowers retailers’ internal teams to understand their customers, their customer data, and to drive revenue.”

Last week was a momentous one for the new company. After a prolonged incubation period, Hatch helped launch Drop-Tank’s “Make it Count" rewards at Marathon. The program mechanics are simple enough (from their announcement):

  • Consumers enter their phone number to earn every time they fuel up or purchase
    select items at thousands of participating CentsOff™ gas stations across the U.S.
  • Consumers are able to choose their preferred program and can redeem
    their program’s currency for CentsOff ™ fuel discounts and more.

Hatch seems to have been able to replicate the simplicity of Belly’s interface and usability, and if their promise holds (and we believe it will), marry it with real-deal analytics and decision-making power.

Mike Giambattista is Editor in Chief at The Wise Marketer and is a Certified Loyalty Marketing Professional (CLMP).