What Reward?! New Starbucks Scheme & my Email to them

Mr, Mrs or Ms. Starbucks…

As usual, it would seem you are but another large corporation for which I was a happy customer, that has gone and put two fingers up at providing a quality value service and has gone back to wanting to line their pockets with cash by removing the things I enjoyed and benefited from as a loyal customer….

I have, for some time, been a very loyal customer of starbucks and have put a fair few quid through your tills. Aside from coffee by the cup, the purchases from your stores in Reading, Berkshire over the last 18months have included a Large French Press, a Medium French Press, 2 Red Thermal Mgs, 1 Stainless Steel Thermal mug, 2 ceramic mugs, approximately 5 bottles of syrup, atleast 25 bags of coffee (various varieties, my favourites being Breakfast Blend, Xmas Blend & Columbian) and more recently Starbucks VIA (approximately 10 packs of 12 VIA’s since launch, 4 of these were for Xmas pressie).

In a recent visit I needed a bag of Breakfast Blend and upon paying for the bag and ordering a small Mocha with Cream (using my favourite Starbucks Stainless Steel mug), I was shocked when handed the reciept that the small Coffee had not been deducted and upon asking the attendant, I was informed that this offer had been withdrawn and replaced with the new “Stars” scheme. It was busy at the time and rather than cause a scene with an attendant who was only following orders I thought I’d wait to get online and see what this new and seemingly ridiculous scheme was about.

So, correct me if I’m wrong, but aswell as removing the offer of receiving a free small coffee whenever I purchased a bag of coffee, or a packet of 12 VIA’s, you have also gone and removed the other daily benefits I enjoyed such as a free syrup or cream!

This has been replaced with a 2 tiered reward scheme where –
Firstly; regardless of the value of each purchase details from your website of the lowered Tier scheme are as follows:
“Green level of the programme, which means you’ll receive a free beverage when you have used your Card 15 times (which equates to 15 stars). Plus you’ll receive news and offers if you have signed up for email and postal news”

1. I was not even told by Email this scheme was starting and I am registered to receive email updates from you, the last email I received was 28th Nov regarding 12 Ways to Enjoy the Season.
2. In your FAQ it says: “Sign up for email and postal communications. We will then email you the first time you have collected 15 stars to let you know that your free beverage coupon is on its way to you. You will then receive your coupon through the post.” “You should receive your free beverage coupon within about 3 weeks.”

Is it not 2012?! We live in a world of Computers, Mobile Devices and the Internet! Why on earth POST a coupon… I was able to receive my previous discounts from just using my Starbucks card, why take things back an age, why waste paper on coupons and what if I don’t have a postal address registered?! Which I don’t, as I didn’t want crap from you through my letterbox in the first place and choose to top-up my Starbucks card by Cash only. So how will I receive a free coffee Coupon IF I continue to buy at Starbucks.
And 3 weeks! Use email for the voucher or discount using the Starbucks card, why inconvenience customers with a Coupon by post!?

You also now demand I have to make 50 purchases using my Starbucks card (within a year) to even enjoy the same basic benefits for which you over-charge for the morsal amounts of flavour to zest up a bland coffee! So that’s 50 purchases on the Starbucks card in a year, regardless of value just to get free syrup, an extra free shot of espresso or free cream… Shocking.

So, in summary, you’ve switched Rewards Schemes without notifying me, despite my email preferences being ticked that I permit you to email me News & Updates.
The new reward scheme offers me zero day2day benefits from visiting a Starbucks.
The new reward scheme offers me zero benefit or incentive for buying Starbucks branded Coffee products (IF I chose to continue buying Starbucks Coffee bags, I’d be better off buying it cheaper on the internet or at supermarket like Tesco’s and getting clubcard points)

So why should I continue to buy at Starbucks when you clearly don’t care for the coffee and products that I purchase from you and can’t even offer me the basic benefits per visit that gave me an advantage over Non Starbucks Card Customers!?
Why don’t I just go and purchase another premium coffee bean for less, or Starbucks products from the internet. Or in the case of VIA buy the new Kenco range of disolvable micro-blend. What exactly are you offering me or doing to enhanace each visit I make to Starbucks to make me feel valued, and before you start quoting the 15 Star scheme, it would seem I can’t benefit from it anyway without a postal address! What now makes you oustanding from Costa or Nero? Why shouldn’t I just go there instead.

I look forward to your policy driven and non satisfying response.

A very disatisifed customer.


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