Costa: 1 Million Nudges

A coffee cup on a red background with text inside reading: 'To all the self taught banana bread makers'

During lockdown, the nation had swapped Costa Coffee for cafetières. As we started to come out of restrictions, Costa wanted to get customers new and old back to stores with a free coffee through their app. But with polls showing people were still nervous of re-entering the world and cafes at the bottom of their ‘first-thing-to-do’ list, could Costa entice the nation back?

  • #1 App

    With 1.1 million downloads, the Costa App became number 1 on app stores

  • Reach Through Referral

    Refer a friend accounted for 1/3 of app downloads

  • Long term Change

    Of those who got a free coffee, 35% came back in multiple times

Give Joy

Against the slew of somber Covid-ads, M&C Saatchi London wanted the work to cut through by not reflecting on the darkness of the moment but by giving joy. The campaign playfully celebrated all those who got through the funnier lockdown struggles, like rocking a terrible haircut, by giving them a free coffee on the app.

Forming new habits

Offering a free coffee is an expensive method to get your customers back. So, M&C Saatchi London needed to not just get people to Costa but keep them coming to Costa. They designed a bespoke CRM journey to break long-term habits of having coffee at home and reinstate the the norm of going to Costa.

Then to extend reach, the moment of truth of getting a free coffee was targeted with a prompt to refer a friend for even more value through Costa’s app.

1 million nudges

With OOH, VOD, social and digital driving awareness and refer a friend stretching reach, 1.1 million people downloaded the Costa App. But above this, the triggered journeys drove long-term meaningful change. Millions of nudges got customers to not only redeem their free coffee but re-establish a Costa habit. This repeat purchase drove an ROI of 1:4 – not bad for a free coffee campaign.

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Strategy and creative: M&C Saatchi London