[Video Interview] Restaurant Loyalty Programs Taste for Technology

Jul 12, 2013

As an industry known for intense competition, restaurants tend to have a low profit margin. With so many choices available to increasingly tech-savvy diners today, restaurants of all types are finding it necessary to offer more memorable customer experiences regardless of whether they’re in the QSR, fast casual or high end category.

Restaurants aren’t alone. Loyalty programs across many verticals are feeling the pressure to stand out by adding great service and technological bells and whistles that incorporate social, location and mobile elements – to their basic value propositions. Research indicates that 86% of consumers would pay more for a better customer experience. However, according to Forrester, only 37% of brands were rated “good” or “excellent” in customer experience indices in 2012.

Kobie’s Senior Business Development Manager Jillian Setzer, Director of Solutions Architecture Wendy Culpepper and I sat down with Roger Williams of LoadFactor to share ideas on how restaurants can use technology to differentiate themselves and boost customer loyalty, including:

  • Allowing customers to use their mobile devices for loyalty program enrollment and point-of-sale payments
  • Sending location-based offers to loyalty members’ smartphones or tablets
  • Using tablets as a medium for viewing photos and descriptions of, as well as ordering, menu items
  • Developing loyalty apps that feature gamified elements which  foster friendly competition among members who are visiting the restaurant at the same time
  • Tailoring some gamified campaigns specifically to families with children

When restaurants go beyond their comfort zone and devise innovative ways to consistently give customers experiences worth participating in – as well as sharing those on social media sites – they stand a much better chance of connecting with loyal customers and driving business relationships that last.

You can watch the full interview here.

What are some of the best restaurant loyalty engagement strategies you’ve seen? Share your thoughts with the Kobie community below.