How Engaging Are Restaurant Loyalty Cards? Why Are Apps Better?

restaurant loyalty cards

Loyalty is hard to come by. It is a bond formed through trust and continued positive experience. It can’t be bought, but it can be rewarded. When people eat at restaurants, they immediately form a mental picture of their experience. If it was good, they’re more likely to come back, but if the service and the food were horrible, they won’t ever show up again.

To that same point, even if everything is perfect, they may still try a new place next time. The quandary here is how to instill a loyalty that keeps them coming back every time without a doubt in their mind that your restaurant is the place they want to go. The answer is restaurant loyalty cards, or at least, it was. In this modern age of smartphones, apps, and the internet, a little old punch card isn’t going to do the trick.

 

What Does an App Offer That a Punch Card Doesn’t?

Many popular restaurants had their own type of food loyalty card at one point. These cards encouraged frequent visits, earning their name through the various stickers or “punches” they received that showed how many times the customer had made a visit. Every ten or so would get them a free sandwich, or coffee. It was simple, yet elegant. Chasing that dream of rewards, but it didn’t do anything more than that.

Most importantly, they became outdated very quickly. They were a sheet of paper and nothing more. Punch cards couldn’t track complex statistics such as the type of food the customer prefers, or what time of day they usually stop by, or anything other than the amount of times they had been there. It was a solid foundation, but technology offers a far more useful and broad method of creating true loyalty and understanding what the customer wants from their visit.

Customer relationship management or CRM is crucial when building a strong brand that keeps buyers coming back. With a punch card, this relationship is nonexistent. With a mobile customer app, suddenly the restaurant becomes part of their daily lives. When customers stop in to eat lunch or dinner, they can redeem a coupon or a discount through the app. Not only does this benefit them and create loyalty, but it provides the establishment with valuable data in regards to their purchasing habits and preferences.

An app such as this, in conjunction with social media promotions, and on-site tracking, can empower an establishment to create a true and lasting bond with their patrons. This kind of loyalty and power to create engagement that can easily lead into many successful restaurant loyalty programs. The possible implications with an app such as this are limitless and driven by the imagination of the business owners and the innovations that such technology provides.

 

Bring Your Restaurant into the Future and Beyond with Appsuite

The idea of having an app dedicated to creating loyalty and repeat business for your restaurant probably sounds fantastic. The problem is you don’t know anything about coding, or how to integrate it into your business. Even if you did, you don’t have to spend on it yourself, much as you would like to, because you’ve got a business to run. Let the experts at Appsuite take care of that, and provide you with an app that will unlock the potential of your restaurant.

The fully comprehensive app begins with customer registering on their phone and providing the following information:

  •      Birthday
  •      Address
  •      User Name
  •      Anniversary
  •      Email Address
  •      Phone Number
  •      Customer Name

With this information they provide, the app can allow you to create custom promotions directly specifically to them. Birthdays, anniversaries, all of this information will allow your business to connect with them and invite them to spend their special moments in your restaurant. The implications go beyond even this. Customers can also reserve their tables ahead of time and find directions to the location, all through this one app.

Because the program is custom made to represent your restaurant, the main page features a high resolution custom image of your choice, to facilitate brand recognition. All of your menu items, beers, cocktails, and so on can be provided through the app in digital form. Now that we’ve seen how much of an impact a loyalty app can provide to your business, let’s see how it can also become a powerful marketing tool.

1. Push Notifications

This first category of marketing allows the app to provide pre-set messages around campaigns and brand awareness. These can be sent out to members of the app, and with a 95% rate of push notifications being read; this method works almost every time.

2. Pop-Up Notifications

The program can also put out marketing for special offers, events, live entertainment and more. This can all be done through high resolution Pop-Up Notifications. These appear on the customer’s phone, providing another valuable avenue for marketing.

3. Drip Campaign

Possibly the most ingenious of all, this campaign is run entirely through the app and represents a “set it and forget it” system of marketing. The campaign is established, and then over the course of weekly intervals it is “dripped” into the customer’s phone, providing reminders of special events and offers for that week.

All of this, provided by a single app. Customer loyalty is earned through rewards, convenience, and of course, great food. You already have the last one, so now it’s time to add in the first two. Restaurant loyalty cards have evolved, and Appsuite is at the forefront of that progress. Grow your business today.

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