We’re in an extremely mobile world now, and this can spell business advantage for those who recognize it.
Consider this: As of winter 2013, more people have cell phone access than toilet access in the world. According to Time News, “Out of the world’s estimated 7 billion people, 6 billion have access to mobile phones. Only 4.5 billion have access to working toilets.”
So it’s clear that there’s opportunity in mobile devices. In fact, I still recall the first time using a mobile device in a restaurant. Not Your Average Joe’s in Randolph, Massachusetts used smart phones to survey its guests. The novelty of completing the survey on a smartphone was the main reason I actually provided the information. It was unique and it’s appreciated that they care about guest input.
Have you been considering bringing mobile into your digital marketing plan? If you’re considering this option, here are a few suggestions for getting the most out of mobile.
Mobile customer loyalty tip #1: Cater to the mobile audience.
Your mobile audience can visit you in a few ways. Some restaurants create native apps that can be used on particular devices they’re created for, like Android and Apple have.
Another option utilized by restaurants is having a website that is mobile-friendly. This typically means that the website will render itself, depending on the device it’s being viewed on.
The last suggestion, and perhaps the most important, is having a social media presence. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are all heavily trafficked on mobile devices. These websites can be easily used by restaurants, don’t cost any money to join, and can be accessed on through apps or on a smartphone’s browser.
Mobile customer loyalty tip #2: Interact with your mobile audience.
The restaurants that have decided to be social on Facebook and Twitter are put into a direct feedback loop, meaning they can see what kinds of posts get attention. This attention, of course, leads to the word of your business getting spread between friends, family members and co-workers. So it’s important to not only see what people are saying about your business, but to also interact with these audience members.
Trina’s Starlite Lounge not only shares pictures and information with its Facebook friends, it supports the local community. In the post below, Trina’s congratulated Kirkland Tap and Trotter, which had just opened up down the street.
Similarly, Kirkland Tap and Trotter actively engages with its guests on Twitter. Below is an example of thanking guests and welcoming them back in.
Mobile customer loyalty tip #3: Make mobile usable
Ordering by phone can be difficult. Sometimes connections are poor and the communication isn’t easy to understand from either side of the phone. However, some restaurants now offer orders through mobile apps and mobile websites. The orders are selected from the menu or typed out so accuracy is not questioned.
Side note: If you don’t have the time or resources to offer online ordering but still want audiences to be able to order online, you can utilize services like Grub Hub. Grub Hub lets users choose from restaurants in their area, order the desired items and then the food will be available for delivery or pickup.
Mobile customer loyalty tip #4: Utilize text messaging
We've mentioned text message marketing in other articles because of its popularity. The open rate is extremely high with text messages as people often have their smartphones on them at all times (or at least most of the time).
The way to offer text message marketing is to promote a unique number on table tents throughout in-store signage. Guests then text this number to sign up, so the whole process features an opt-in aspect.
Text message marketing works the best for stores with a constantly rotating inventory because guests can be messaged once new items are available. This works great for restaurants too; they can inform their guests when specials and menus change. If you want to enhance your customer loyalty program, text messaging is a sound idea.
Have you started utilizing a mobile customer loyalty program? Please share your experience with us!