‘Real time’ digital feedback influences menu innovation at The Restaurant Group

‘Real time’ comments from customers using a dedicated smartphone app will provide The Restaurant Group (TRG) with a means to drive menu innovation, the company has revealed.

It has rolled out a ‘guest-feedback’ app that is designed to allow it to better understand and respond to customer needs.

The feedback is being used to drive menu innovation, employee training and operational improvements. By the end of the year, this data will feed into the company’s CRM system.

TRG, which owns brands such as Frankie & Benny’s, Chiquito and Coast-to-Coast, is currently focused on building a digital platform that enables customers to order, pay and feedback digitally, at home, en route to, or in restaurant, making the customer experience faster, easier and more intuitive.

It recently launched and implemented ‘pay with app’ functionality across its Leisure business, allowing customers to pay on their mobile phone using their credit card, debit card, PayPal or Apple Pay. It says the take-up so far has been “very encouraging”.

Later this year it will also launch mobile functionality to facilitate ordering ahead of visiting the restaurant.

“Digital ordering will enable customers to digitally add to their orders during their meal. We are also developing kiosk functionality which will be particularly helpful to our Concessions business,” the company stated.

TRG’s customer communications are becoming increasingly targeted, via media channels as well as CRM. In June it broadcast its first ever TV advert via Sky Adsmart, enabling it to target specific households which align to its target demographic.

Having built and launched its CRM platform in the first half, it is now running campaigns to test its effectiveness at converting lapsed customers, driving incremental customer visits and occasions, and more efficiently targeting and testing promotional mechanics.

Meanwhile, the company says that it is also stepping up its delivery offering across its Leisure brands, with some individual sites delivering across UberEats, Deliveroo and Just Eat.

In addition, it has successfully trialled ‘delivery-only’ brands, initially with ‘Burger Burger’, targeting locations where a gourmet burger offering is not represented, and followed by ‘Kick-Ass Burrito’, targeting more casual delivery occasions.

In June it rolled out a ‘Click and Collect’ functionality across its main Leisure brands making it easier for its customers to order takeaway and addressing off-trade demand in regions where there is no delivery coverage.

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