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Ep. 108 Customer Experience: The Key Ingredient to App Growth

McDonald’s loyalty rewards app grew to 21 million members within the first four months of launching. Today’s guest gives the backstory on the three key ingredients to the success of their massive growth. Learn about customer research at this brand’s scale, how they managed a seamless customer experience, and their creative go-to-market strategy.

Bryce Boothby is the Director of Global Tech at McDonald’s. He’s responsible for aligning the 150+ markets McDonald’s serves. Previously, Bryce oversaw the growth of McDonald’s digital marketing in the U.S., including its rewards app and Before McDonald’s, he was the Sr. Operational Cost Analyst at Ford.

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Questions Bryce Answers In This Episode

  • What piqued your interest in digital marketing when you were at Ford?
  • How challenging was it to evolve McDonald’s digital ecosystem when you first joined the company?
  • Can you tell us about the evolution of the MyMcDonald’s Reward program? What components of your strategy do you think really made a big difference?
  • When you’re doing customer research for a brand of your size, do you have to meet a pretty high minimum threshold of consumers that you’ve engaged with before you can make any sort of determinations, and do you have to do that across multiple geographies?
  • When you ran the test pilots in Phoenix and New England, did you have any unexpected results that drove changes within the loyalty program?
  • What’s next for the mobile loyalty program?


  • 2:38 Bryce’s background
  • 7:25 Selling McDonald’s on the need for digital
  • 10:20 Massive growth of their loyalty rewards app
  • 13:10 3 key strategies to growing the app
  • 15:35 Innovative integration with Twitter
  • 16:35 Audience research at McDonald’s
  • 17:37 Surprising results from test pilots
  • 19:26 Why the McDonald’s workforce was key
  • 21:21 What’s next


(11:47-12:04) “Just as a point of reference, granted McDonald’s scale is pretty significant compared to some of our competitors, but we essentially have 21 million members over the course of four months. Starbucks I believe had about 25 million members over the course of seven or eight years.”

(16:40-17:03) “I think one of the statistics that really astounded me when I joined McDonald’s is, I think it’s something like 80 or 90 percent of the entire U.S. population visits McDonald’s at least once a year. So if you take that scale, that’s massive. So how do you understand what drives all our different types of customers? What’s compelling to them? Because they all have different need-states, different demographics. So, it is challenging.”

« In the world we live in, it’s really about connecting both the digital to the in-person experience. »

Bryce Boothby