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Gloria Jean’s Coffees turns to mobile to court mall visitors

January 20, 2011

Gloria Jean's taps Carnival Labs for app development

Mall-based retailer Gloria Jean’s Coffees is driving consumer engagement, brand loyalty and foot traffic with a branded application for Apple’s iPhone and iPod touch.

Gloria Jean’s tapped Carnival Labs to create the application, which was released in the App Store with an average number of initial downloads. Then, as the scheduled in-store promotion came out after the first week, download numbers went from around 1,000 to about 10,000 almost instantaneously.

In addition to an integrated social media strategy, Gloria Jean’s rolled out 2,000 printed items promoting the application in the 500 stores in Australia to begin with. The company followed that up by rolling out promotional collateral in all of its international stores, including the United States.

Mobile Commerce Daily’s Dan Butcher interviewed Guy Horrocks, cofounder/business director at Carnival Labs, Christchurch, New Zealand. Here is what he had to say:

What was Gloria Jeans’ strategy behind the launch of its iPhone app?
The main focus is around more user engagement and building stronger brand loyalty.

However, it also has great potential tie-in with further innovative technology rollouts planned over the next 12 months.

The brand wants to be seen as a technology-leading company engaging in mobile.

For a company that is in 32 countries, it actually offers quite a cost-effective strategy, as aside from eventual translations, launching worldwide or selectively to different countries is very easy with the iPhone.

What is the target demographic?
Coffee enthusiasts and regular customers, with a relatively wide age range of roughly 15-60.

The good thing is with the sharing ability of users sending a coffee via Facebook or Twitter and being on the App Store in general, it does open the door for new customers to download or have interaction from the app without prior experience with the brand.

What challenges does Carnival Labs address for Gloria Jeans?
Having seen a lot of apps get swallowed or lost in the 300,000-plus applications on the App Store, we definitely brought our experience to the table having seen what works.

Pushing Apple to be featured is always a good move, yet never guaranteed.

We have had most of our applications featured in some way by Apple, so we are fairly confident that Gloria Jean’s will get some help at some stage on the App Store.

In-store promotion and making sure customers know there is an application out there is crucial.

Also, it was very important to work very closely through the design process early on to make sure we combine Gloria Jean’s branding and style with Apple’s user interface guidelines.

How have Gloria Jeans and Carnival Labs gotten the word out about the app?
As mentioned, in-store promotion has been key, as well as emails to review sites on launch, pushing Apple for promotion, Facebook and Twitter at this stage.

We have some more promotion coming up, but nothing additional for mobile yet.

Is there any in-app payment functionality? Does Gloria Jeans distribute coupons or other offers via the app?
Currently with Phase 1 of the rollout it does not have payment facilities in it.

It is always nice to “complete the loop” where you can, although there has to be effective in-store support before you can start having mobile coupons or ordering via phone.

It is a fairly decent process ensuring every store in 32 countries can support it.

So we have discussed these types of features and many users are keen to see them, and it is definitely something that we want to do.

As a brand, it is very open to explore options in this space, and some of the concepts they are exploring are definitely very cutting-edge, which is exciting.

Final Take
Gloria Jean’s YouTube channel

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Dan Butcher is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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