Marketing Your Restaurant With Customer Loyalty Apps

Marketing With Customer Loyalty

Customer loyalty programs are designed to turn new customers into regulars, and turn regular customers into even more devoted fans of the brand.

They accomplish this not only by being the most convenient way to hear about restaurant deals and rewards, but also because they serve as a crucial extension of the restaurant’s existing marketing strategy.

Marketing with customer loyalty apps is more personal, offers new ways to drive engagement, and can benefit a business’ bottom line by making users more aware of special deals and menu selections.


The Basics: Tips for Successful Marketing with Customer Loyalty Apps

The world of mobile applications has been around for quite some time, with Apple’s App Store having been introduced just over a half-decade ago in 2008. In that time, plenty of experimentation has taken place in order to see how applications can best serve the needs of business owners and restaurants.

There are generally a few easy ways to leverage the power of an always-on data connection, an intuitive mobile application, and the ability to send alerts and deals right to the devices that customers use most often.


1. Start By Including Essential Information in the Application

A restaurant’s mobile loyalty application should certainly focus on offering customers great deals and making them aware of special promotions, but these are actually secondary within the application itself.

Keep in mind that most customers will only open the application after they’ve decided to visit the restaurant for a meal. They may not know where the closest location is, or if that location has their favorite item on the menu, and they’ll want to clear up that confusion first.

For this reason, successful customer loyalty applications almost always include links to a GPS-aware location finder and a copy of the local restaurant’s menu with prices.

This allows customers to find the closest restaurant, type it into their phone’s mapping application, and satisfy their craving no matter where they are. The application can also reassure them that menu items and pricing remain uniform, accommodating both their craving and their budgetary needs at the same time.


2. Loyalty Programs or Check-Ins

Customers like to know that restaurant owners value their regular dining at a local establishment. While this used to be conveyed by a manager’s visit to a customer’s table, today’s diners are a bit more demanding.

A mobile application makes every dining experience feel interactive when it offers a loyalty program based on proximity or self-initiated check-ins.

Using the same GPS-connected feature set, restaurants can allow customers to simply indicate that they’ve arrived at the restaurant. They might be awarded points, a free appetizer, or a small bill discount as a result.

They’ll feel more valued almost instantly, and the reward program will turn into a fun game that will keep them playing. That means they’ll keep coming back over time to see what other rewards their check-ins will bring.


3. Make Reservations or Special Deals Easier to Access

Sometimes, calling a restaurant for a reservation just isn’t possible. Customers could be in a meeting, or dealing with something that doesn’t permit use of the phone.

What was once an inconvenience for customers is now an opportunity for restaurants: A successful customer loyalty strategy will see the implementation of app-based reservations that make a table just a few taps away.

No phone call, no noise, and no inconvenience. That’s the very definition of the kind of experience that creates a repeat customer at most of today’s busiest restaurants.

Another key way to improve customer loyalty through mobile app marketing is simply to take advantage of the phone’s built-in push notification feature.

If customers wish to receive push notifications from their favorite restaurant’s application, they’ll be instantly notified of happy hour specials, new menu additions, dining discounts, and other benefits.

That will make them feel more included, and make the experience more affordable, which can benefit a company’s table turnover and their bottom line over an extended period of time.


Marketing with Restaurant Loyalty Apps is More Personal and More Effective

There’s a reason for the explosive growth in mobile app marketing strategies around the world. These types of programs are highly effective and simply work more consistently than printed materials or catchy slogans.

Smartphones present a more immediate, and more personal, gateway into a diner’s daily life than television commercials and billboards.

They’re more likely to pay attention to an alert from their favorite lunch spot or fine dining establishment if it comes directly to them through an application rather than a drive time radio ad.

Companies that wish to take advantage of effective mobile marketing and customer loyalty simply need to follow the tips above and work with Appsuite to help them craft a unique, inclusive experience.

With a personal touch and a bit of added convenience, loyalty rates will increase almost immediately with a new mobile application.

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