How Can Loyalty Programs Integrate Crowdsourcing?

Feb 28, 2014

Retail TouchPoints recently interviewed Kobie VP of Business Development and Marketing, Bram Hechtkopf, for “Trend Watch: Crowdsourcing and Loyalty Programs Converge,” an article that looks at how loyalty programs and crowdsourcing are coming together. Bram argues that “as brands continue to integrate loyalty with social, which is really where crowdsourcing and its community-based aspects come into play, brands will start to get some powerful feedback.” Bram discusses how crowdsourced loyalty could be great for small to medium-sized companies, giving an example of a small-town ice cream business in Maine. Read the full article featuring Bram and other marketing thought leaders here.

Bram also notes that “you can define crowdsourced loyalty however you’d like,” a reminder that it is an emerging but still-early trend. Adi Gaskell, a commentator on social business and innovation, discussed crowdsourcing in a blog post last year, and specifically My Starbucks Idea. Adi points out that Starbucks, which has one of the best loyalty programs, only implements 1 out of every 200 crowdsourced ideas. “Contrast that to crowdsourcing ideas from within the business,” Adi writes. “At a low tech level, car manufacturer Toyota regularly implements thousands of employee suggestions each year, and they can do so because those employees typically know the business inside out. …It’s smartsourcing rather than crowdsourcing.

How can big brands make crowdsourcing a “smarter” loyalty tactic? Bram points out the potential for smaller brands, but could better loyalty technology, like our Alchemy® platform, make consumer crowdsourcing “smarter”?

Stay tuned as we’ll be sharing more on Alchemy updates in the very near future. Or email us at to receive more information.