Shaken & Stirred - Influential Brand Profiling and Positioning

Starbucks account : The Kitcatt Nohr loyalty club curse appears to have struck again

The Kitcatt Nohr loyalty club curse appears to have struck again after it was revealed that its Starbucks client is talking to rival agencies about its direct marketing and CRM account.

Publicis-owned Kitcatt Nohr has held the coffee chain’s business since 2011, when it beat off Havas EHS to become Starbucks’ first dedicated UK direct agency. It went on to devise the My Starbucks Rewards card, which allows customers to collect “stars” each time they buy a drink, and is also available as a mobile app.

Benefits of the programme include free coffees for when customers collect a certain number of stars and comes in two levels – green card or gold card.
A spokeswoman at Starbucks said: “We regularly review our agencies but have no announcement to make at this time.”

It is not known whether Kitcatt Nohr is repitching for the account but the review will no doubt spark bitter memories at the agency. Last year, the shop lost both the myWaitrose and the My John Lewis loyalty scheme accounts – which went to AIS London and Proximity London respectively – despite developing both programmes from scratch.

At the time, then agency boss Marc Nohr said: “We are very proud of everything we have achieved with Waitrose over the past six years. In terms of successes, we have partnered Waitrose from the beginning of its CRM journey through the creation of one of the most profitable and successful loyalty programmes in the market.”

Nohr was most recently global marketing director at office rental group Regus but is now between jobs as he waits to start a new role, understood to be at an agency group.