Tapcoin by Hooch; starting with scale is the secret to success

Hooch is an existing hospitality perks app with over 200,000 users who currently enjoy discounts at over 100,000 hotels, restaurants and bars.

As loyalty specialists there’s many things we like about the existing Hooch app including its elegant design, engaging imagery, handy geolocation services, extensive list of offers, a tiered membership model and a great advocacy program. It has just been missing a loyalty play, until now.

Tapcoin is taking the Hooch experience to the next level by integrating blockchain and rewarding consumers for the everyday purchases they’re already making through the Hooch app

We caught up with the Tap by Hooch CEO & Co-founder Lin Dai for a quick Q&A to get some exclusive insights on the program:

Q1. You mentioned Facebook and Google are controlling the consumer data market. How will Tap compete against these global giants?

TAP plans on decentralize the monetization of data by giving the control back to the consumers. Consumers can decide which brands to grant permission to their data and store their permission in a smart contract. Permitted brands will be able to access data and insights by directly depositing TAP Coin into consumer’s TAP wallet, and encourage consumers to take an actions such as redeem the TAP Coin for a free product or $x off a purchase. Trusted publishers and media companies can serve as data delegates and help consumers store and share their data on the TAP network and receive a % of the brand advertising revenue. It’s a win for all parties, rather than today’s advertising ecosystem where centralized publishers such as Facebook use consumer data for targeting and keep 100% of the advertising revenue.

Q2. What specific benefits will blockchain add to the program?

Blockchain provides the ability to manage millions of micro-transactions efficiently. Brands from hospitality to retail can reach millions of consumers and encourage them to take an action by paying them a small amount in digital tokens, which previously was nearly impossible to do efficiently via fiat. Every consumer has a blockchain wallet that becomes their identifier, data is encrypted and sensitive personal information such as name is no longer needed, as smart contracts automatically execute when criteria is met. How the consumers use their rewarded tokens can be trackable, providing transparency and accountability back to brands.

Q3. Will you be offering a white label solution for other programs to use to better engage their member bases?

Absolutely. TAP network as a rewards and data technology is built with white-labelling in mind. We are actively working with top publishers, media and entertainment companies to bring it to consumers in a variety of ways. We expect TAP wallet to first launch in the Hooch App in 2018, with many more 3rd party web and mobile apps to integrate and be powered by TAP in 2019.

Q4. What are the different ways you plan to incentivize members to share their data?

To start with, consumers will receive 5-10% back in the form of TAP Coin on Fiat-based credit card purchases with close to 100,000+ hospitality vendors, including top hotels, restaurants and bars around the world – almost 5x to 10x your average standard credit card rewards points. Additional TAP will be rewarded if a members take certain actions such as referring friends or opt-in to share more information with brand partners. We plan on making rewards very easy to redeem with your earned tokens, from rewards bookings at hotels to restaurant credits and even for gift cards including Amazon and Starbucks.

Hooch has some pretty big name brands like Bacardi and Paramount currently using their app to advertise, but their new blockchain marketing approach clearly has the potential to optimise the advertiser’s budget as well as the user experience.

The fact that they’re testing this concept on a huge 200,000 persons user base whom they already understand and which is already larger than most full sized blockchain loyalty programs currently operating, fills us with confidence.

Finally, the sizeable member foundation we’ve been dreaming of (and hinting at in too many past blog articles to count)

Finally, a merchant network of over 100,000 signed prior to launch

Finally, a program which is designed to layer over existing apps

We like the proposition “tap into your future”, together with the robust roadmap and Hooch’s proven market penetration and ability to operate at scale – a true killer combo. We suspect we’ll see a nice success story come from this one.

Thanks again to CEO & Co-founder Lin Dai for answering all of our questions, giving us great insights into the program purpose, design and execution. We can’t wait to track the progress.


Stacey Lyons is the Marketing Director at Loyalty & Reward Co, a leading loyalty management consulting agency based in Sydney. Stacey has years of experience within loyalty, marketing and eCommerce across multiple channels and business models. Most recently, Stacey has been managing the investor, member and retailer communications for blockchain loyalty company EZToken Rewards.

Stacey is a proud pioneer of women in blockchain and regularly contributes to www.blockchainloyalty.io global resource centre for everything blockchain loyalty. Let’s connect! LinkedIn, Twitter