Restaurant owners are constantly tasked with innovating to stay ahead of the competition and keeping customers flowing through their doors. This is especially true for new businesses, as studies show 60% of restaurants close within 3 years of opening.
So how can you beat these statistics?
Marketing is an area of your business operations where small changes can have a huge impact on your bottom line. As technology continues to change the ways businesses market themselves, keeping abreast of new marketing technologies can help you stay ahead of the pack.
Here are four ways to use new technologies to give you a competitive advantage:
Digital Loyalty Programs
Loyalty programs have dramatically evolved over the last few years. Moving away from paper stamp cards and plastic keychains to a mobile loyalty program puts you in your customers’ hands.
Customers have responded well to the introduction of mobile loyalty programs and apps. The National Restaurant Association found 50% of restaurant customers use their smartphones for rewards or special deals occasionally. And digital loyalty programs present the opportunity for increased revenue. Starbucks, for example, does 22% of its sales directly from the Starbucks App.
Online Engagement is Key
Long gone are the days when customer interactions end when customers leave your restaurant. Online review platforms and social media sites keep the conversation going, and it is important to embrace this and use online engagement to your advantage. Regularly update your social media platforms and communicate with your customers who post or tweet about your restaurant. These are opportunities to make lasting positive impressions and help to keep your restaurant top of mind next time they are deciding on their dining options.
Extend your customer base by working with third party delivery apps. The rise of delivery apps such as UberEats has changed the landscape of the food delivery space. The delivery market is growing leaps and bounds, notably, TechCrunch estimated it to be a $210 billion industry, with more consumers utilising these apps everyday. Working with one or many third party delivery apps greatly extends your reach, placing your menu in front of a growing audience of potential customers.
Modernise Your In-Restaurant Marketing. Marketing doesn’t stop once you get customers in the door. Providing an excellent experience is key in continuing marketing. Implementing new technologies such as digital menu boards or self-serve kiosks allow customers to get involved in the ordering process and visualise items, aiding in their decision.
Taking the time to learn and implement emerging technologies, can propel your restaurant ahead of the pack and connect you to new customers. Next time you’re thinking of ways to improve, look to new technologies to drive business and help you withstand the test of time.