The next Cloud Feature - Frequent Flyer program to lock you in

I am participating in a Route to the Cloud webinar tomorrow and one the points I want to make is whether you want to be cloud independent or not is an important decision.  What fool would want to be locked into a cloud?  In fact GigaOm's Barb Darrow just posted on the issue of lock-in preventing movement to the cloud.

Fear of lock-in dampens cloud adoption


Data portability — the ability to move your information between clouds (or in and out of clouds) with relative ease — is a key concern of companies considering a cloud move.

It’s become a truism to say that data is the new gold –but that doesn’t mean there are easy answers about where to store this gold. For now, many corporate customers will hold back on full cloud computing adoption until they’re convinced that they can move their data off a given cloud as easily as they put it there in the first place. Face it: fear of vendor lock-in is not limited to the on-premises IT world and it’s time enlightened vendors get this problem in hand.

What would motivate people to accept a lock-in?  Frequent Flyer program.  The human behavior to get points is ingrained in people.  

Can you imagine if AWS launched a point program for the amount of Cloud Services used and gave program owners the ability the redeem points for merchandise?  Users would then have the incentive to have larger AWS bills and loyalty to a cloud provider is common.

No one in the cloud service has a frequent flyer program, and this probably will never happen.  Note: this is a what if AWS launched a frequent flyer program, not they have.  

This may sound crazy, but we have all seen people who go through extreme lengths for Frequent Flyer Points.  You cloud kind of do this already if you set up a Rewards Visa card.  If you spent a $1,000/month on AWS that would be 3 points/$1 = 3,000 points / 100 points/$1 = $30.  You spend $10,000 a month on AWS.  Not hard to do. You get $300 a month in your account.

Companies tried to take away an employees frequent flyer points, but that didn't work.

Welcome Rewards Visa Cardmember

Earn points on every purchase*

  • 3 Points per $1 spent on
  • 2 Points per $1 spent at gas stations, restaurants, drugstores, and office supply stores
  • 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases

Redeem your points instantly at checkout with Shop with Points

You can use the points you earn to buy the stuff you want right at checkout.

  • See your points automatically
  • Pay for all or part of your purchase - there's no minimum
  • Every 100 points = $1.00 towards your purchase