Rewardjunkie founders Matt and Brady Thomas reckon retailers aren’t getting great value from daily deals and can’t afford to be part of the larger loyalty schemes, so they created their own platform whose playing ground lies somewhere in the middle.
“We’re kind of like FlyBuys for the small guys. The big difference with rewardjunkie! though is unlike daily deal sites, is it's your customer database. You can contact them as when you want," says Matt.
Six months after launching, rewardjunkie released its second version last week.
Deals offered through the rewardjunkie app reel in new users and the loyalty scheme aspect keeps them coming back. By registering their usual credit or Eftpos card, customers can rack up points with every purchase at a member retailer simply by swiping that card to pay.
"You don't do anything different than you normally do," Matt says.
Adds Brady: “Customers have told us that they hate carrying around different cards for different loyalty schemes so we’ve created a way to get around that."
Each of the 70-odd venues around Wellington that currently participates in rewardjunkie gets to dictate how many points it takes to unlock a freebie.
"Some bars say you need 70 points for a beer, some say you need 140," explains Matt.
With 6,000 customers on board so far, rewardjunkie is also going international – it's just signed agreements in the US and Vietnam.
Matt says the business idea is "highly scalable as it is" and shouldn't need much, if any, tweaking for other markets.
Retailers or 'dealers' pay a subscription fee to rewardjunkie based on their number of active users.
“Retailers don’t need to change anything at the point of sale. We've found that any programme that involves more work doesn't work” says Matt.
“Also, current reward programmes are boring and way too passive where users can’t easily tell how many points or what rewards they have so we’re making this instantly available on your phone. We’re also adding a lot more social interaction so users can compete with their friends and retailers can leverage their customers and their own Facebook presence to promote themselves better.”
Charlotte Kurta, general manager of Mishmosh, Lotus Room and Tokyo Teahouse bars in Wellington, says all three have been on board with rewardjunkie from the beginning.
The first iteration of rewardjunkie involved the scanning of QR codes and so the new version, which is fully automated, means "absolutely no hassle" at the customer end.
"It's a really cool loyalty programme for regulars – they get really excited about building up points," she says. "You can send out personalised 'treats' targeting certain people, knowing what pushes their buttons, straight to their phone."
It's also an attraction for new customers who are curious to know what rewardjunkie is all about and how it works, she says.