Rogers Vicinity

Dark Horse goes with Rogers for mobile coffee cards

Dark Horse Espresso has just rolled out a new rewards program that gives coffee drinkers points for every dollar spent at any of their cafes. The popular coffee shop joined the Vicinity network just over two weeks ago and is already getting some positive feedback on the program.

Vicinity is a turnkey loyalty program for small businesses which was just recently launched by Rogers Communications in May of this year. The program itself is currently in its infancy and is only available in Toronto at this time. Dark Horse joins Mabel's Bakery and Earth Glow Health Bar as some of the very first businesses to try out this new program in the city.

Signing up for the program is quick and easy - something extremely important when you have a line of people waiting behind you to get their morning caffeine. I was able to get a membership at the Dark Horse location on Queen West in just a couple of seconds. All you need to get started is to give your phone number and grab a Vicinity rewards card and you are good to go.

If you are like me and love getting points for free stuff but can't stand to have yet another loyalty card in your wallet, you'll really like the fact that you don't need your card at all to collect points. Once registered, you can just give the person at the cash your phone number and the points you've earned for that purchase will be attached to your account. This is true for any of the participating Vicinity businesses around the city which makes this program entirely convenient. Of course, tapping your rewards card on the Vicinity terminal is always an option.

For Dark Horse co-owners Edward Lynds and Deanna Zunde the ease of use for both their staff and their customers was key to selecting this program. They wanted a way to reward their customers but didn't want a program that was cumbersome to use and so Vicinity fit the bill. Although the program is relatively new for Dark Horse, Zunde told me she has already had some "serious thumbs-up" from customers she's talked to about the program.

Dark Horse is currently offering one point for every dollar spent on purchases at the cafe as part of this program. Reaching thirty points gives users three dollars off their next purchase at any of their four locations around the city. This ends up working out similar to the traditional ten-punch coffee card where you by ten coffees and get one free. To give you a leg up on your first free coffee, new Vicinity members get bonus points when completing their registration either online or via the Vicinity Android or iPhone app.

We've covered similar reward programs in Toronto before and if anything is certain there's no clear winner in this space yet.

Have you tried Vicinity? Do you think it's any better than the alternatives like Point Monkey, Ferret and Club Ovahi? Add your thoughts to the comments below.

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