On May 29, Godiva Chocolatier plans to launch the Godiva Chocolate Rewards Club, the confectionery retailer’s first-ever loyalty program.
“We’ve been talking about this for quite some time,” said Mike Giresi, SVP of IT and CIO, explaining that Godiva’s new owners, Istanbul’s Yildiz Holding, have offered the appropriate financial resources to launch the program. “We were not a strategic core imperative of [our previous owner] the Campbell Soup Company,” he added.
Creating a loyalty program now is imperative to create a stronger relationship with Godiva’s highly-engaged customer base, he explained, especially given the current economic conditions.
“Over the years, people have said they want more of an experience from Godiva,” he said. “It’s critically important because we are a discretionary product and we have to have a compelling reason for people to give their share of wallet to Godiva.” In addition, the competition in the chocolate segment is “fierce and feels like it’s growing at an exponential rate,” he pointed out.
The Godiva Chocolate Rewards Club will offer consumers perks including free chocolate – which focus groups communicated as one of their strongest desires – free shipping and a monthly e-newsletter featuring special offers and new product announcements.
To celebrate the launch, Godiva will also offer members the opportunity to win a complimentary chocolate party. Membership is free and members receive a free piece of chocolate each month just for stopping by one of Godiva’s 270 North American boutiques.
The rewards program is now live in just 10 of those stores, but will expand to the rest of the boutiques on May 29. An online version of the rewards program will also soon be launched, said Giresi.
“The feedback [from the 10 stores] has been fantastic, they’re so thrilled and happy,” he said. “The store associates are really charged up about it, there’s a lot of momentum.”