#222: Loyalty Leads the Transformation of Albertsons

Albertsons is one of the largest food and drug retailers in the United States.

In today’s episode, “Let’s Talk Loyalty” meets Matthew Stevens, Albertson’s Director of Loyalty Programs and Strategy, who shared how their loyalty program is supporting the dramatic transformation of their business, in direct response to changing consumer behaviours and expectations.

Boasting almost 2,300 retail stores in the United States across multiple brands including Albertsons, Safeway, Shaw’s, Randalls and United Supermarkets among others, this interview with Albertsons showcases a masterclass in retail loyalty strategy and success.

Show Notes:

1) Matthew Stevens

2) Albertsons Companies

3) Safeway 4 U

Audio Transcript

Welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty, an industry podcast for loyalty marketing professionals. I’m your host, Paula Thomas. And if you work in loyalty marketing, join me every week to learn the latest ideas from loyalty specialists around the world.

This show is sponsored by Comarch a global provider of innovative software products and business services. Comarch’s platform is used by leading brands across all industries to drive their customer loyalty. Powered by AI and machine learning, Comarch technologies allow you to build, run and manage personalized loyalty programs and product offers with ease for more information, please visit Comarch.com.

Hello, and welcome to today’s episode of Let’s Talk Loyalty, an interview with Albertsons in the United States. The second largest grocery retailer in the country, featuring brands like Albertsons, Safeway, and Shaws. Matthew Stevens is Albertsons director of loyalty programs and strategy, and he joins me today to share the dramatic transformation of Albertsons loyalty program in 2021, all in direct response to changing consumer behavior and expectations. I hope you enjoy this incredibly insightful conversation about how to create customer loyalty quickly and scale, especially when the company is led by a leadership team that truly believes in the importance of investing in a compelling loyalty proposition for their customers.

So Matthew Stevens joining me today from Albertsons Companies. Welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty. Thank you, Paula. Happy to be here. 1 (2m 6s): I’m really pleased and impressed that the Carolyn and the team and figured out what a big deal Albertsons is in the loyalty world. Matthew, my goodness. You’re doing some incredible work. 2 (2m 17s): Yeah, we were really excited. You know, I think we’ve had a couple of really strong years and really looking forward to the future of new innovations we can bring to Albertsons. 1 (2m 28s): Great, great. We’ll get into all of the detail now, and I think I confess to you all fair, Matthew, that I don’t know actually anything about Albertsons, so you’ll have to educate us all a little bit, but before we get started talking about your own business and your own programs, tell us a little bit about what is, I suppose, your own favorite loyalty program just as a loyalty professional. 2 (2m 49s): Yeah, so I think my favorite loyalty program right now, and the one that I probably use the most often due to the fact that I really enjoy coffee definitely has to be Starbucks. I think their mobile app is really user-friendly. You’re able to customize your beverages and, and decide if you want to pick them up and store or have them brought to your car really seamlessly. And then I think from a just structure of the loyalty program itself, it’s really easy to understand, you know, the number of points that you’re earning your redemption options, how you can redeem your star rewards is also really seamless. 2 (3m 33s): And then I also really love that they have those mini games. So, you know, a couple of times a year they have these kind of like gamification or gamified experiences and, and those are always really nice. So they have one, I think they just had had one, typically have one in like the spring summer, and then around the holidays as well. 1 (3m 51s): Oh, nice. Nice, nice. And one of the sad things genuinely Matthew is, you know, I live in Dubai and we haven’t had the Starbucks rewards program here until very recently. 2 (4m 3s): So, 1 (4m 4s): So I’ve written about it extensively I’ve, you know, researched it extensively and of course admire, you know, everything, they announced all of the expertise and the insights, but I haven’t had the opportunity like you to go in and have that user experience. So a little frustrating for me, but as I said, hopefully the Dubai version is, is as good as the us version. 2 (4m 27s): Hopefully, hopefully 1 (4m 29s): When you introduce Albertson’s Matthew, because as I said, like 75% of people listening to let’s talk loyalty are outside of the U S and then, and you’ve been an awful lot going on there. So maybe just give us a sense of the company and the loyalty strategy that you guys have there. 2 (4m 46s): Yeah, sure, sure. And hopefully I can do it justice. I think, you know, Albertsons right now is the second largest grocer in the U S just behind Kroger. When you think about our footprint as well, Albertsons has almost 2300 retail stores nationwide. So quite a large footprint and geographically, we are stratified across 34 states plus the district of Columbia. And so if you’re thinking about a map of the U S we’re basically not in the Southeast part of the us, we’re almost everywhere else, essentially. So quite spread out, lots of, and then within that, we also have a lot of banners within the company itself. 2 (5m 31s): So Albertsons is actually, you know, we have our own Albertsons banner, we have Safeway, so we have different regional banners. We actually have 22, I believe, banners nationwide. And so, you know, they each have their own histories and their own, you know, offerings and specialties as well, 1 (5m 50s): And a banner just for people outside of grocery retail. That literally means a grocery store brand. 2 (5m 55s): Exactly. Yeah. 1 (5m 57s): Yes. Yeah. It’s amazing. I mean, you know, those kinds of words sound obvious, but I never want to assume, because again, I’ve never worked actually, even in grocery loyalty myself, so lots to learn, lots to learn. So a huge group, a publicly quoted company, I think I’m also writing and understanding. Yes. Yeah. Fantastic. Great. And second biggest in the U S that’s extraordinary. So tell us about the loyalty strategy. I think you joined, when did you tell me about a year and a half ago? So where was loyalty when you came in and, and what do you, what are you kind of doing? 2 (6m 32s): Yeah, yeah. So I joined in September of 2020. So this was, you know, first year of the, of COVID and quite a busy time for grocery that we had. We’re experiencing a lot of growth, lots of customers for the first time trying e-commerce options, delivery and or pickup, and, you know, for reasons that they didn’t want to come into the store to shop. And so they felt more comfortable trying that out. We also had just a lot of new customers trying our brands for the first time ever. And so we had a loyalty program in place in 20, 20, and many years before that. And it was called just for you. And it really focused on our personalized deals. 2 (7m 15s): That was kind of, you know, the major emphasis of the program back then, and then also had a rewards component as well. And there’s two options to use rewards. One was fuel rewards. So you could use your rewards for discounts at our own fuel stations or our partner fuel stations. And then there’s another reward type that we call grocery rewards, which you can receive either free products or discounts, basically like a cash discount on your overall basket. And so that program had evolved over the years, quite a bit. And as I mentioned in 2020, we were experiencing a lot of customer growth, a lot of new new customers trying our band for the first time and our e-commerce. 2 (7m 58s): And so what we wanted to do is really ensure that our loyalty program was able to capture these customers and retain them with us and provide them with benefits that they came to expect at other retailers. And so we knew that we needed to evolve the program a little bit, look at our benefit offering and see kind of where perhaps we had room to grow and expand. And then, and also just looked at other structural changes in the program as well. And so that work really started in the fall of 2020 to reassess our program. 2 (8m 39s): And then about a year later. So in August or so of 2021, we announced really three core changes to the loyalty program into just really Albertsons digital e-commerce experiences. The first one was we brought two mobile apps into one. So previously we had one mobile app that was only for loyalty focused tactics or initiatives. Really. It was like, you know, you went into these, this app to clip your deals, to redeem your rewards. And then there was another app that really you use for e-commerce transactions. So we brought those two apps together and a brand new refreshed experience that started to launch in the early part of 21 and culminated in the final banner launch in the summer of 21. 2 (9m 29s): And so that was really exciting. The, the app now combines the opportunity for a customer to shop e-commerce and for them to, you know, clip their deals, redeem their rewards, receive their loyalty benefits, and perhaps sign up for the subscription service as well. So all in one really sleek app, and we keep adding new features to that as well. And then one more change, or I guess the second change of course, was the loyalty program rebranding from dress for you. So it was kind of the same, same name to program across all of our banners and, and geographic footprint to tying it now to the banner name a little bit. So it went from just for you to Albertsons for you or Safeway for you. 2 (10m 13s): And we wanted to tie it back to the banner, although for the customers who are cross shopping and in markets where we have multiple banner stores, the program still works the same. They can still use the program at a Safeway and an Albertson’s. That’s not necessarily, you know, no problem there, but what we wanted to do is tie it back to the banner name. And then as I mentioned, we refresh the program with some new perks. And so the first one that we came out with, which is really exciting was now finally a birthday perk. So customers provide their birthday and then on, in the month of their birthday, they receive an offer and the offers based on their level of engagement as well. So that was exciting. 2 (10m 54s): And then also we formalized a benefit for a free monthly item. So as long as the customer is, is engaging with us and shopping, then they’ll receive monthly free items that they can go into the store and pick up. And so that was an exciting opportunity. We were able to bring to life. And then we, we also of course continued our personalized deals and our rewards, and then refresh some tactics behind those as well, to make sure that the deals people were receiving, you know, or the ones that they, they, you know, felt most relevant. And then the last big change. So many changes last year, the last, yeah. 2 (11m 38s): And we all, you know, it’s interesting as this all kind of more or less happened at one time. And so a lot happened last summer, but the last key change that took place last year was we refreshed our subscription service. So we had a program that was called unlimited delivery club, and now we refreshed it to fresh past, and it has a whole slew of really awesome perks and benefits. And, you know, essentially it is of course, a, a subscription service for 99 a year or 1299 a month. And customers are able to get free delivery. Of course, as the core benefit on items on a total basket, that’s $30 or more, but then really other also interesting perks. 2 (12m 23s): So you get some discounts and percentages off on our own brands, if you shop on the, for those products. And then also with our partnership with Starbucks, we were able to give a monthly Starbucks perk. So if you’re a subscriber, you get a special offer once a month based on, you know, our partnership with Starbucks in our stores. And so that was also a really exciting to bring to life. So now we have, you know, this really clean, unified mobile app experience, we have a refreshed loyalty program that hopefully has less confusion for our customers. And then we also have this, you know, refreshed and amplified subscription service as well. 1 (13m 4s): Yeah. And I almost don’t know where to start Matthew in terms of, you know, which of them to pick up on. But I suppose to give listeners again, you know, a sense of the scale of your program, you announced some wonderful numbers recently, so maybe you’d like to share just how many kind of members you have across the program. 2 (13m 22s): We did. Yes. Yeah. We, we recently had our earnings call. We re announced that we reached 30 million members and the loyalty program. Yes. So excited about the recent growth. Yeah. 1 (13m 34s): Well, I think it proves the point Matthew, because I think it’s very interesting, you know, when I look at kind of research and that kind of stuff, you know, certainly in other markets, for example, I was just talking about some research in Australia and the average and number of program memberships is decreasing at the higher level. So what I mean is people who are members of more than 10 programs, it’s just coming down. I think people are finally saying, I don’t want to be member of every possible loyalty program just because I’m invited. So I think people are being more selective and they have higher standards. I think you’re absolutely right. The changing consumer behavior through the pandemic has been extraordinary to witness and it totally has. 1 (14m 20s): And to me, like, I, I I’d be interested to hear your view on this, but to me, you know, times of crisis, such as a pandemic and for me, the last one, I suppose, that would be equivalent would be the, the big kind of global financial crash of 2008. To me, that’s when certainly brave brands like Albertsons clearly doubled down on customers. And so, so I love to hear that you guys, you know, responded to that huge challenge with taking care of your customers in an even better way. It’s so many ways. 2 (14m 51s): Yeah. Yeah. I completely agree. I think, you know, of course the fountain foundational elements, especially in a public health crisis are, you know, taking care of, you know, your employees, especially the ones that are public facing. And then also making sure that there’s a safe and clean environment for customers to shop. But I completely agree. I think, you know, listening to customers based on their new, new needs and their evolving desires, the, and the way that they shop has changed dramatically. And so making sure that our customer insights are timely and refresh so that they can inform the changes that we seek to make. 1 (15m 29s): Yeah. Yeah. Wonderful. And before I forget, you gave me a wonderful number off-air as well, Matthew, about the sheer amount of jobs and people that are employed across Albertsons Companies. So I’d love you to share that one as well. 2 (15m 41s): Yeah, of course we have about 290,000 jobs nationwide, so quite a large employer in the U S 1 (15m 50s): Extraordinary. So just on this, this beautiful clean unified app, which I will definitely download as soon as I land on American soil. And one thing I just wanted to ask, because I’ve just been in this position, like you were, and mine was in telecom, so very different sector, but again, there was at least two apps and sometimes actually for other companies, there may even have been a third app. And I suppose the reason that the technical people at the time said, actually, no, we want a separate one for loyalty, separate one for billing or whatever it might be. They always said that there was a risk that, you know, trying to do all things would make the app very heavy to download. 1 (16m 31s): Is that something that kind of came up in your experience or maybe time has moved on now? Matthew, it was 10 years ago when I was having those conversations. I’m sure the, the technologies has moved on, but I think it makes beautiful sense from a consumer perspective. Was there any pushback for that reason or any others that you’re aware of 2 (16m 52s): In terms of keeping it as two apps? Yeah, No. You know, I think I, I’m not quite sure why it evolved as two apps, you know, in the, in the beginning. I think that that could have certainly been a reason. I think maybe one reason was when the, the two apps were formed. I think our loyalty app and the program historically had been viewed as you know, I, I use this program to clip a lot of coupons digitally, right. And so, and that experience felt very different than e-commerce and our e-commerce experience was much more, you know, it was much smaller than it is today. And so I think, you know, fast forward to 2020 pandemic hits, everything has changed, right? 2 (17m 37s): E-commerce is now everyone is trying it, you know, people who have never, never before used it are using it much more often frequently, and they just come to expect something very different. And we like, it made a lot of sense to bring those two worlds together where you’re shopping and clipping deals and using rewards. But I will say, I think the people who, you know, are our customer segments who have historically used our, the older loyalty app where it was really just, you know, all you could do is flip deals and redeem offers that that was definitely a learning curve for them, because now they’re introduced to a different app where you have the opportunity to shop. 2 (18m 17s): Right. And it’s not all loyalty, there’s a lot more going on with e-commerce. So I think it really brings, you know, a different kind of experience for the customer and challenge. Yeah, 1 (18m 29s): Of course. Yeah. Well, there’s ongoing education, as we know, and we’ve already touched on simplicity, so, you know, it’s, it’s a fine line, so I absolutely know what it’s like, you know, in your position to make sure, as you said that you respond to as many people as possible, don’t leave anybody behind and, and yes. Keep it simple at the same time. So clearly with 13 million members it’s working. So sounds awesome. And you’ve mentioned flipping deals a few times as well. Matthew, is that a behavior that you see continuing, or have you any insights on that? Just from again, the behavior changes we’ve all been through? I just find it always super interesting. It feels like a very American thing. 1 (19m 10s): I know we all do it around the world, but you guys would think you’d be doing it for the longest. And therefore, I feel like it’s the most ingrained behavior. So I would just love to, to have any insights on how that might be shifting or not at that, that you’re aware of. 2 (19m 25s): Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s a good question. You know, I, I think there are elements where a clip indicates of course interest. And so when, when we have hundreds of coupons available, you know, some that are related to our store or more personalized offerings or manufacturer coupons that clip, you know, certainly helps us understand that, okay, a customer has seen this, they’re interested in it and they perhaps might use it. And so I think that there’s some, you know, merit and to keeping that clip or that part of it, but what we’ve started to introduce, which I think that makes a lot of sense is for our subscribers, for our subscription customers who joined fresh pass and who joined that program, we have actually started to what we call auto clip, or you don’t have to essentially clip certain offers because, you know, you’re a subscriber, you kind of automatically get these perks or benefits and you don’t have to go in and indicate that you want to use it at this time. 2 (20m 25s): So I think, you know, there are certain scenarios where that path certainly makes sense. And there are other scenarios where we want to make sure that the customer is indicating that they’re, that they want to use this perk or this feature or this coupon at this time, as opposed to, to us just providing it. So I think that depending on the park itself and the program that it sits under, you know, we, we’ve definitely been able to use both methods. 1 (20m 53s): Very nice that that’s wonderful. And I’m very insightful, Matthew, thank you. Yes, because there is, as you said, there’s the engagement, the activity, the, there is almost a sense of, I think, fulfillment as well and you know, the customer going and doing that flipping and feeling like that they’re availing of something that perhaps other people have missed or don’t, aren’t entitled to. So I can kind of see that both at the same time, you want to be simple and efficient and all that kind of stuff as well. So super interesting. And the piece you mentioned just there a while ago about the monthly free items, Matthew, am I right in understanding that that’s not a reward that you, you burn points for? Is that something that’s given on top of the rewards? 2 (21m 36s): Exactly. That’s right. Yeah. So you receive an email and then you can then indicate that you want to pick that up the item up and then you go into our stores and you can get that item. 1 (21m 48s): Wonderful. Wonderful. And I don’t know if you can answer this, but is this something that manufacturers can support or, or do support from their side to maybe drive sampling? Is that kind of part of the strategy? 2 (22m 1s): Yeah. Yeah, exactly. It’s definitely part of the strategy and it’s also, I think a lot of the free items tend to be our own brands. So we’re trying to get customers to both be aware of our own products and our exclusive brands and then also try them. 1 (22m 17s): Okay. Makes sense. Makes sense. So yeah, another form of sampling, I used to do a lot of that kind of stuff myself, but it was on behalf of actually an energy company and we partnered with the largest grocery store in Ireland. And there was a mutual benefit because nobody, you know, you can’t give free energy. Of course, you know, there’s just nothing, nothing sexy you can do with that. And so we used to give away free bars of like a premium chocolate bar and that was super nice and it drove footfall in of course then to the grocery store. And so I honestly think between that and coffee, I used to give away a lot of free coffee as well for different reasons. So yeah, I think I was responsible for some, I don’t know, minor health issues maybe In the Irish 2 (23m 2s): Market, energizing people. Right. 1 (23m 4s): Totally, totally. Yeah. It’s up to them to manage it, I guess. So, yeah, but it’s, it’s, it’s a lovely insight as well, you know, just that, that feeling that I don’t have to burn rewards or points, is it a points currency you actually use, but Matthew, yeah, 2 (23m 19s): It’s a little bit of both. So we have a unique model where customers earn points so on all their purchases, you’re earning points. And then once you earn a hundred points that converts into one reward and then you, you burn those rewards. Yeah. 1 (23m 34s): Okay. Okay. Perfect. Perfect. And the other piece that I loved, obviously the birthday offer sounds super nice. I’m sure that’s resonating well with customers, is it? 2 (23m 44s): It is. Yeah. We, we’ve gotten a lot of really good customer feedback about it. And so that has been nice. And I think we’ve learned a lot about the offer. So, you know, before we launched it, we piloted some offers based on, you know, anniversary dates of when a program or sorry, when a customer joined our program. And so that was also really fun to test into and learn about. But I think, you know, it sounds really simple to, to, you know, offer a birthday offer or a birthday perk. But I think it, it, it means a lot to customers when you’re acknowledging, you know, something that is special to them. 2 (24m 24s): And also that they have given you, you know, I’ve given you my birthday, so I would hope that you do something with it. And then when you do, it’s a, it’s a really nice moment. I think to say, you know, happy birthday, we recognize you, we celebrate you and you know, here’s an offer and enjoy and join us on that. 1 (24m 41s): Yeah. I’ve sometimes said on this show, Matthew, that when my birthday comes around, I’m very often professionally disappointed because like that I have such high expectations and I really want something that I feel like has been really thought through. I did get a beautiful one recently from almost like a coalition here in UAE where I got a, a coffee and a cake actually. And that was beautiful because again, it’s super cause it’s my birthday and I want a cake, you know, and why not, why not go in and have one. So anyway, that’s all wonderful. The other big one that you told me about before, sounds actually like the most innovative thing I’ve heard perhaps in grocery Matthew in a long time. 1 (25m 25s): And it’s about this whole idea of catering to people using your platform and creating obviously recipes and then, you know, needing to actually go and cook and, and have that recipe available so that they know what to do with all the wonderful ingredients they’ve bought from you. So I’d love you to tell us the story just for everyone listening. I think it says a genius one. 2 (25m 47s): Yeah. Yeah. So Albertsons acquired this company called meal lime that was based in Canada. I believe that was last summer in 2021. And then they were fully integrated into that same new refreshed app, a mobile app in December of 2021. And so now, and then most recently, actually as of last week, it’s now this service is also available on our website as well, which is really exciting. And you know, what this allows customers to do is really plan, shop and cook all within our mobile app or now our website. And so customers can go in, they can indicate their dietary, you know, restrictions or preferences or allergies. 2 (26m 29s): And From the, that those kind of preferences and indications, we then can personalize recommendations for that customer. And then they, they can of course scroll through and filter the ones that they like. They can save them, they can print them and then they can also tap to add them to their meal meal plan, if you will. And they indicate how many servings they’d like to make. Of course they can see all the nutritional information there as well. And then after that, so after they say they’ve selected three meals to cook for this week, they can then move to the next step where it asks you. Do you want to add these items to your basket to check out right now? 2 (27m 13s): Or would you like to add them to your list to check out in store? And so we’ve seen a lot of great engagement from, you know, those, this tool and this service. And so customers now are finally able to kind of explore, you know, the other side of food, right? It’s kind of the, the preparing for your store visit and shopping. And then after you obtain your, your ingredients and your food, you’re able to actually go back to the application, open it back up and say, okay, I’m ready to start cooking. And as you tap into that meal that you’re cooking and preparing, of course it shows you, you know, step by step instructions and, you know, your hands are covered, you know, and ingredients and food. 2 (27m 56s): And all you have to do is kind of swipe your hand over the, your phone. And the camera recognizes that you’re, you’re going to the next step. So the camera, the application remains, you know, unlocked and open and it, it kinda just flips for you to the next step. So it’s really an exciting, you know, tool that we can bring to the application and to our customers. And we think it really marries nicely with our food, you know, Albertsons is of course all about food. And so it’s a really nice integration to give customers inspiration that is, you know, between store visits. 1 (28m 34s): Exactly, exactly. And I’ve seen other brands, of course, doing parts of that customer journey, Matthew. And of course, you know, there’s, there’s often, you know, recipes on the websites and those kinds of things. So I think it’s the fact that you’ve completely closed the loop, given them the options, as you said, for the e-commerce or in store shopping experience, then of course, allowing them to go back in and wave their hand over the camera. I think it’s hilarious. 2 (29m 1s): Yeah, it’s really great. I think, you know, I’m team kudos to them. They built a really incredible product and the recipes are really strong as well. And so it’s really exciting. I think it’s, it’s a really nice compliment to both the program and to Albertsons as a whole. 1 (29m 19s): Yeah. Yeah. And it’s the kind of one I can imagine that will get you the, the word of mouth referrals as well, because as we’ve talked about already educating people about anything on our loyalty programs does take time and effort and focus, but actually if people start telling each other, you know, particularly when you’ve innovated with something like that, I think it makes all of our lives an awful lot, like a lot easier. 2 (29m 42s): It does. That’s right. 1 (29m 44s): Wow. So with all of this wonderful success and growth, what would you say maybe, is there anything that you have learned along the way in terms of them would never do that again, or would never, I don’t know, join a company in a, you know, a pandemic effected business. Again, I don’t know. What, what would you say you’ve learned in your, your loyalty career so far? 2 (30m 7s): Yeah, I, you know, I think one, one thing that I’ve learned is I think Albertsons is, is really trying and is innovating at a really rapid pace. And as I mentioned, I think last summer we had this culmination of these three major launches, but I think what I would, you know, I’m, I’ve learned and what I am trying to embody moving forward is an ability to not overload the customer. Right. And to think about when do we announce things, how do we announce these changes so that we, we are able to kind of, you know, make sure that the customer isn’t overwhelmed when we go to them with a new program, a new app and a new subscription service and, you know, whatever other changes we may have. 2 (30m 57s): So really thinking about from a customer perspective, how they digest this information, how they use it, how the information is received and kind of when we tell them certain things, because I think all those are very important to, of course ensure the success and usage of, you know, the, the different programs and initiatives that we’re bringing to life. So I think, you know, there’s a lot on the horizon that we’re, we’re wanting to test and wanting to, to introduce to customers, but I think doing it and making sure that we’re doing it in a thoughtful and spaced out approach is probably my biggest takeaway. 1 (31m 32s): Oh, I love that. I love that. Yeah. And I guess the other piece, and I don’t really have any more questions I guess, but you did share with me a wonderful article and where your CEO is literally talking about loyalty, being key to the next phase of your business transformation for Albertsons. 2 (31m 50s): Yes, yes, yes. You have a vac recently. Our CEO mentioned that during our last earnings call and it’s really great to see, and here that we have, you know, senior leadership talking about loyalty on our earnings calls and that we have support from our leadership teams and, and that our entire organization really is both passionate and understands the value of the loyalty program power that it brings and how, how it differentiates us from our competitors. And so I’m really excited to read that article and to share it. And then also now to think about how, you know, how do we bring the rest of our ideas to life and, and introduce more customer innovations in this space 1 (32m 35s): For sure. Well, what I will do is make sure of course, to link to yourself, Matthew and that article with Yvette in our show notes, and anybody can reach out to me of course, anytime to, to make sure we have a copy of that. And the only other thing I would say is I would love to touch base again next year and please God, and keep the conversation going, because I love the innovation. I love the customer focus. And, and I think in some ways you’re quite lucky that within grocery loyalty, certainly obviously for Albertsons is clearly respected and that’s not something that every other industry can can do, because it can be much harder to prove the return on investment. 1 (33m 16s): So, so for a brand to invest in it, as heavily as you guys are doing and, and for customers to feel that because they genuinely believe they do feel it. I just think it’s a wonderful experience for, for all of the stakeholders. 2 (33m 28s): Yeah. Thank you. Yeah. I completely agree. You know, I think as you mentioned, some industries you can see and experience, and I’m sure you’ve talked to many people who, you know, it’s, it’s much more difficult and perhaps maybe operating sometimes in like a silo, right. And you have to convince people and get buy in. But I think we’re very fortunate that that, you know, Albertsons understands and sees the value and the return that it brings. 1 (33m 55s): Fantastic. Well, listen, on that note, I’m going to say Matthew Stevens, director of loyalty programs and strategy at Albertsons Companies. Thank you so much from let’s talk loyalty. 2 (34m 5s): Thank you, Paula. 1 (34m 8s): This show is sponsored by the wise market marketeer. The world’s most popular source of loyalty marketing use insights and research. The wise market tier also offers loyalty marketing training through its loyalty academy, which has already certified over 245 executives in 27 countries as certified loyalty marketing professionals. For more information, check out the wise market tier.com and loyalty academy.org. 1 (34m 49s): Thank you so much for listening to this episode of let’s talk loyalty. If you’d like us to send you the latest shows each week, simply sign up for the let’s talk loyalty newsletter on let’s talk loyalty.com. We’ll send our best episodes straight to your inbox. And don’t forget that you can follow let’s talk loyalty on any of your favorite podcast platforms. And of course we’d love for you to share your feedback and reviews. Thanks again for supporting this show.