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Chipotle launches new loyalty program

The chain will promote Chipotle Rewards by giving Venmo payouts to fans

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. has launched a new customer loyalty program, Chipotle Rewards, the company announced Tuesday.

Chipotle Rewards members will receive ten points for every dollar spent at any Chipotle location, online or in the app. For every 1,250 points accrued, members will get a free entrée, among other bonuses like special extra points days, and free chips and guacamole after they sign up.

“Similar to how we build restaurants where people live and work, we want to have a presence in all of the places our customers spend time digitally,” Curt Garner, chief digital and information officer at Chipotle said in a statement. “Chipotle Rewards is another access point for consumers, a way for guests to engage with our promise of real ingredients prepared fresh daily and a way for us to say thank you for joining our mission of cultivating a better world.”

Chipotle previously experimented with a more complex loyalty platform based on visits as opposed to spending. In summer 2016, the Newport Beach, Calif.-based burrito chain launched Chiptopia, which rewarded customers for frequency of paid visits.

CEO Brian Niccol first mentioned the possibility of a new rewards program in a May 2018 conference call, when he teased the idea as part of Chipotle’s detailed comeback strategy. Digital initiatives and efforts to make the brand more accessible have been central to the brand’s plans under Niccol.

To promote the new program, Chipotle is partnering with mobile payment service Venmo to divvy up surprise awards to 25,000 Venmo users each day through March 15. Cash rewards will range from $1 to $500 per person, up to a total of $250,000.

“Chipotle is one of the first brands to utilize Venmo’s technology to engage with customers through this pay-out feature on the Venmo app,” chief marketing officer Chris Brandt said in a statement. “Our customers have been asking for a loyalty program for a long time and we’re excited to partner with Venmo to reach their highly engaged network of digital-first customers.”

Chipotle Mexican Grill has about 2,500 locations.

Contact Joanna Fantozzi at [email protected]

Follow her on Twitter: @JoannaFantozzi






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