Crumb by Crumb: Building Sustainable Growth Via Rewards Programs

Small wins add up over time

👋 Hey, I’m Ben! I write weekly about tactical strategies that help drive growth at early-stage tech companies. I go deep on growth strategies, interview successful founders, and explore what can be learned from best-in-class products.

Sustainable growth is a game of consistency and compounding. It’s not always an explosive hockeystick up and to the right; wins build up over time and build a strong base that makes future growth come easier and at larger scales.

I’ve been writing about health and fitness apps a lot recently but this week I ran into an app experience that stood out to me from a very different category… Cookies!

Like many other brands, Crumbl cookies offers a rewards program where you earn “crumbs” with every purchase. 100 crumbs is worth a $10 credit. Rewards programs like this are great for driving repeat purchases, but Crumbl added an additional layer to their program.

They layered in incentives for additional actions you can take that will help them build that strong base. Although the benefits of most of these actions aren’t felt immediately, they all set the stage for future growth and are important for Crumbl’s business.

Some of the best ways to drive sustainable growth come from small things: growing your email list, growing your community, building up follower and review counts, etc. Crumbl knows this and is building around it.

This concept could be applied to almost any app but the actions to include won’t be the same for all (although many will be similar). It’s important to think about what behaviors you want to incentivize within your product and then building the program around those behaviors. For example, most of the above behaviors are relevant to a nutrition app but they could layer in additional incentives for behaviors like tracking foods or calories, amount of vegetables consumed, etc. and use it as a retention driver.

These concepts can be applied to almost any product. The key is to look at your own product and business, understand what actions you want your users to take, and then figuring out the appropriate incentives structure.

You’re going to want to check these out…

  1. This article - talking about how Setapp is preparing to launch an independent app store as Apple rules change. Change is in the air!

  2. This article - is a memo that was sent to the Slack team before their first release and is a great display of product thinking and positioning.

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