Target Corp. has hired Keith Colbourn as senior vice president of loyalty and lifecycle marketing.

Colbourn, who starts Jan. 1, will in part focus on promoting the popular in-store Target coupon app Cartwheel. Target’s Cartwheel app is the fifth most-popular U.S. retail app, as ranked by iOS and Android downloads for the year ended September 30 2015, according to mobile app analytics firm App Annie. Cartwheel, which curates mobile coupons for shoppers to use in-store, is even more popular than Target’s main app, which ranks No. 9.

“Colbourn will lead the development of data-driven marketing strategies that drive traffic and sales, deepen brand engagement and build guest loyalty, including Target’s current portfolio of loyalty programs such as the popular savings app, Cartwheel,” Target says.

Colburn has a strong digital background. He joins Target from digital promotions and loyalty company Quotient Technology, formerly, where he was senior vice president of retailer digital solutions. In this role, he worked with U.S. grocery, drug, mass merchandise and dollar store retailers through Quotient’s Retailer iQ program, which helps retailers  build loyalty and connect with shoppers across mobile, social and desktop, while also capturing, tracking and analyzing customer data. Prior to Quotient, Colbourn was senior vice president of loyalty and analytics at grocery store chain Safeway. He also in the past was vice president and global loyalty practice leader at retail data analytics company dunnhumby, where he worked with U.S. and international clients on their loyalty and customer strategies. Earlier in his career, Colbourn held leadership roles at FreshDirect, one of the first online grocers, where he led the launch of DeliveryPass, a grocery delivery subscription program, Target says.

“Keith brings deep subject matter expertise and a proven ability to build highly effective customer-centric, mobile-first marketing and loyalty programs,” said Jeff Jones, chief marketing officer, Target. “We are on a path to transform Target and build a differentiated shopping experience that caters to our guests’ evolving expectations. Keith’s leadership will be a tremendous asset as we continue to modernize and expand our capabilities.”


Target is No. 43 in the Internet Retailer 2016 Mobile 500, which ranks global online retailers by their annual mobile sales.

“Target is an iconic brand that’s backed by a world-class team, and I’m thrilled to move to Minneapolis and get started,” said Colbourn. “There is no doubt that Target has deep brand love and a loyal guest base and I look forward to working with the team to make the Target experience even richer and more rewarding for guests.”

Target has made several recent investments in mobile technology. In December 2014, Target promoted Jason Goldberger to president of and mobile. Goldberger joined Target in February 2013 as senior vice president of and mobile from online flash-sale retailer Gilt, where he served for two years as the executive vice president of Gilt Home, Gilt Kids and Gilt Taste.

Earlier this year Target announced it was testing beacon mobile technology in some of its stores. Target is using beacons with the Target iPhone shopping app to test delivering deals and recommendations to shoppers as they are browsing in Target stores, Target announced in its blog. Target said when it announced the test that it will have between 20 and 50 beacons per store but will limit the number of push notifications it sends shopper to two per trip. A typical Target store covers 135,000 square feet.

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