[The Master Shake Signal]
Ever heard of a French gaming chain named Micromania? Yeah, neither had we until this morning's GameStop conference call, where the game retail giant's CEO J. Paul Raines specifically cited the (GameStop-owned since 2008) franchise for its member loyalty program ("MegaCart") and the success it's had in Europe. "We believe that the loyalty program at Micromania drove some of the highest sales per store in Europe that we've seen, so we think it's a very effective program, and that's the base for what we added to our existing loyalty program here at the Edge," Raines said, confirming the rumored plan to add a customer loyalty system at GameStop. When asked about when the new loyalty program would start rolling out, Raines stated that it'll be arriving this May in "four markets" (which could be anything from entire regions of the US to specific states or anything in-between -- we've followed up for clarification).

So what can GameStop consumers expect from this new loyalty program? Not many details were given, but a few speculative ideas were offered. "Ours will have different rewards, it won't be purely a markdown program that gives you discounts once you reach a certain threshold," Raines said, adding, "It will also have unique rewards like tickets to shows and early entrance to midnight launch, etc." No mention was made of how this will effect those of you with current Edge card subscriptions, nor if this new rewards program will be separate altogether. We've contacted GameStop corporate for clarification and will update this post if we hear more, but for now you can read Raine's entire statement after the break.
GameStop CEO J. Paul Raines, regarding the company's loyalty card program:

"So Micromania has had the MegaCart program for many, many years. It's probably the most successful video game loyalty program in existence. If you look at Micromania, as we did early on, you know, 86% of their transactions have a MegaCart ID associated with them. MegaCart is not only a loyalty program, it becomes a launch device and vehicle, it becomes a marketing vehicle -- it even helps you decide where to put new stores as a real estate vehicle. We believe that the loyalty program at Micromania drove some of the highest sales per store in Europe that we've seen. So we think it's a very effective program, and that's the base for what we added to our existing loyalty program here at the Edge.

How will ours be different? Our program will build heavily on what you see at Micromania today, but it will add some very significant pieces. Our marketing team has done extensive surveys of the kinds of rewards consumers are looking for. If you recall, one of our previous or one of our conference the fact that we did an internet survey and had to shut down the response engine because there was so much interest in a GameStop loyalty program. Ours will have different rewards, it won't be purely a markdown program that gives you discounts once you reach a certain threshold, it will also have unique rewards like tickets to shows and early entrance to midnight launch, etc. So we think that it builds on what we have for Micromania, but it really adds a lot of sophisticated consumer insights to monetize that GameStop consumer and it brings unique rewards that only GameStop can bring you.

In May we'll be in four markets. The name of the game here is to drive share of wallet, 'cause we've got great share but we're not getting 100% of the heavy consumer's buy."

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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