Starbucks opens up loyalty programme to Spotify in new first

Starbucks opens up loyalty programme to Spotify in new first
Liz Morrell is a freelance business journalist and content creator with more than 20 years writing experience, including 15 in retail and associated sectors. She is a regular contributor to MarketingTech but also covers a number of other industries in her freelance capacity. Contact her via LinkedIn or at

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Starbucks is, for the first time, opening up its loyalty programme to a third party in a new deal with Spotify that will also allow staff to influence the music playlists played instore.

The partnership means that Spotify users will have the opportunity to earn Stars as Currency for the My Starbucks Rewards loyalty programme. 

From Autumn of this year the partnership will be rolled out in a phased introduction, firstly into Starbucks US company owned stores and then into Canada and the UK to produce a next generation music platform for Starbucks sites.

In the initial launch phase 150,000 US employees of the coffee giant will receive a Spotify Premium subscription which will allow them to help shape the instore music programming using tools provided by Spotify. The playlists will then be accessible on Spotify via the Starbucks mobile app and through a dedicated section on Spotify featuring the new Starbucks playlists and those from the past twenty years.

Daniel Ek, CEO of Spotify, said he was proud to be partnering with the company. “Starbucks has a rich music heritage and customers who are passionate music fans which makes us incredibly proud to be their music partner,” he said.

“We plan on building one of the most robust digital ecosystems of any retailer in the world.  Given the evolution of the music industry and the proliferation of streaming technology, it was natural that we would partner with Spotify in offering our customers a new way to engage with their favorite music,” added Kevin Johnson, president and coo of Starbucks.

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