Shake Shack Tests Bitcoin Rewards to Attract Young Consumers

Shake Shack Tests Bitcoin Rewards to Attract Young Consumers

Shake Shack Inc.

offers bitcoin cryptocurrency as a reward for purchases made at the burger chain using Cash App, a digital wallet offered by Block Inc.

Customers will receive 15% of their purchase in the form of bitcoin on any Shake Shack purchase made with Cash Card, a debit card available to Cash App users, and purchasing items through Cash Boost, a rewards program available to Cash Card members.

Users can search for the promotion in Cash App, under the Cash Boost program and the Cash Card tab, until mid-March.

Shake Shack is testing whether it can reach younger consumers on Cash App and whether customers are interested in more cryptocurrency options, burger chain executives said. Block’s largest customer group is in the millennial and Gen Z age groups, Amrita Ahuja, the company’s chief financial officer, told The Wall Street Journal in October.

Shake Shack hasn’t seen demand from its customers to pay with cryptocurrencies, so this experience will be helpful in determining whether the company should start accepting them as payment or expand the rewards program at some point. given, said Jay Livingston, chief marketing officer. burger chain officer.

“You always try to place your bets on the things that will really make sense and not waste resources on the ones that won’t,” Livingston said.

Interest in cryptocurrency has increased, with institutional clients trading $1.14 trillion worth of cryptocurrencies on Coinbase Global Inc.

exchange last year, compared to 120 billion dollars in 2020

Additionally, 62% of cryptocurrency owners increased their use of digital currencies in 2021, and 57% of consumers surveyed want to earn cryptocurrency through a rewards program, according to research from Visa. Inc.

A group of around 6,000 crypto investors known as CityDAO has purchased 40 acres of land in Wyoming. The WSJ’s Paul Vigna explains how this Decentralized Autonomous Organization, or DAO, came to own this land. Photo illustration: Josephine Chu

Block has been experimenting with bitcoin on Cash App since 2018 and started allowing users to send it to others on the app for free last year, among other features to encourage people to learn more about crypto- change. Users’ familiarity with bitcoin on the app prompted Shake Shack to work with Block on its rewards promotion, Livingston said.

“If we started using crypto right now in our kiosk, adoption would be very low,” Livingston said. “But thanks to someone like Cash App, who promoted it, you’ll have more people who want it and also want to learn.”

Customer reward programs that offer bitcoins are one of the easiest ways for consumers and businesses to join the cryptocurrency space, said Alex Adelman, co-founder and CEO of Lolli Inc. , a bitcoin rewards company. Rewards from retailers including eBay Inc.

and Lowe’s Cos. are available on Lolli.

Rewards promotions like Shake Shack’s offer businesses a new way to digitally connect with their customers while delivering value to them, said Gracie Page-Fozzati, chief technology officer at SJR, a consulting firm in content marketing owned by WPP PLC.

“This loyalty program effectively subsidizes the democratization of crypto to a mainstream audience,” Ms. Page-Fozzati said.

Many businesses seek to experiment with cryptocurrency without expecting positive results, said Karine Hsu, a partner at Slope Agencies LLC, a creative agency that has worked with crypto startups. But brands still need a concrete strategy as they experiment and determine whether consumers are curious about cryptocurrencies, she said.

As interest grows in Web3, a buzzword used to describe decentralized internet and startups in the cryptocurrency space, companies should see how they can add value to customers experimenting with digital currencies. and other related technologies,” said Brendan Gahan, partner and social director. to advertising agency Mekanism Inc.

“Brands have to recognize that the ecosystem is moving away – it’s evolving – and it’s maturing, so if you want to play in this space, you really have to bring something to the table,” Gahan said.

Write to Ann-Marie Alcantara at [email protected]

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