Wakaberry, the pioneering self-service, soft-serve frozen yoghurt bar franchise, has added a new dimension to its interactive culture by launching its popular loyalty card programme as a smartphone app.
Created by Cape Town-based mobile loyalty specialist SWARM Loyalty, the WakaApp gives customers the full visual experience of the original loyalty card, with the added benefits of a one-stop, multi-function app that goes beyond the basic loyalty stamp and adds real value to the Wakaberry experience.
Wakaberry brand manager Luise Peters says the paper-based card system had numerous flaws that needed solving.
“Maintaining a physical loyalty card system is labour intensive, and there’s no real way of collating and distributing useful customer behaviour information back through Wakaberry,” says Peters. “The paper system was also prone to fraud, which added to the cost.”
Searching the market for a better solution, Wakaberry discovered a similar app created by SWARM for lifestyle franchise Kauai.
“We liked what we saw, and were struck by the passion and knowledge of the SWARM team,” says Peters. “Clearly they had experience in this very new and exciting niche, understood the challenges we would face in rolling out the product across our stores, and demonstrated exactly how we’d go about achieving our goals.”
SWARM developed the WakaApp from the ground up using its custom-built mobile loyalty solution. Designed to mimic the look and feel of the original Wakeberry card, the app gives customers a one-touch interface for collecting Wakaberry stamps, and an easy way to keep track of their stamps and claim their rewards. It also provides Wakaberry immediate insight into its customers’ buying habits, with built-in point-of-sale integration allowing Wakaberry to gather rich information on sales trends, and other valuable sales and marketing data.
“We launched the WakaApp three months ago, and while it’s still early days, the uptake has been more than encouraging,” says SWARM co-founder and managing director Rowan Vlaming.
“With more than 5 500 users currently registered, Wakaberry is already starting to see the real benefits of having an integrated mobile loyalty app in place of the older manual system,” he says.
“As a leader in its niche market, Wakaberry is always challenging itself to find better ways to service its customers. One of the biggest benefits is the volume of rich and immediate information they have access to through the app. In return customers benefit from having one less loyalty card to carry around, and are actively rewarded for engaging with their local Wakaberry store,” notes Vlaming.
Peters concurs: “The insights we get from our customers’ buying decisions and patterns is crucial for making strategic decisions and constantly refreshing the brand.
“We are currently integrating our new products (the WakaWaffle and WakaCone) into the system to allow loyalty points for these purchases,” she adds. “We’ll also be introducing vouchering in the near future, and in the long-run we see the WakaApp becoming an integral part of our communications strategy, making it the mobile hotspot for all WakaFans.”