Coffee. One of the most profitable products in the world, sold by iconic brands to a legion of addicts prepared to spend a premium for their daily hit in thousands of outlets across the UK.
Sat in Market Evolution Towers, we have two Starbucks, two Prets, a Costa and a Coffee Republic within a 2 minute walk, so we're not short of choice. We're regular buyers, spending money daily.
Given how passionate we are about loyalty and recognising and rewarding valuable customers, I've now dipped my toe into the plastic card-based coffee loyalty schemes on offer. A real live test of how two major brands treat me as a regular, engaged and recognised customer.
My Pret card has been loaded online and awaits its first outing. My Starbucks card has been loaded in-store.
I have no idea what benefits are on offer. I've had a free coffee this morning from Starbucks for loading the card for the first time, but have only been promised "surprises" in future. Pret is an unknown ballgame, just waiting to reward my business over the next few months.
I'll keep you posted on the relative CRM strategies and loyalty rewards, and whether this will change my behaviour and spending patterns. Are they running good schemes, time will tell