If you are giving mobile apps the stink eye, thinking they are just a passing craze and requiring too much investment to be worth the hassle, then you may want to reconsider.
Australian QSR brands such as Guzman Y Gomez and Mad Mex Fresh Mexican Grill are starting to see the unique benefits of having a mobile app, especially when courting customers and running effective loyalty programs.
A new survey commissioned by Oracle Hospitality found that 46.35% of Australian millennials want to use their mobile devices to capitalize on loyalty programs offered by restaurants, bars and coffee shops.
Unfortunately, the same survey found that only 15.58% of Australian millennials do so already, representing a significant gap.
“This represents a huge opportunity for food and beverage operators. Millennials are willing to share data in return for personalization and acknowledgment,” says Christopher Adams, Vice President, Food and Beverage, APAC at Oracle Hospitality.
“You can gather invaluable information on behaviour, target promotions to increase average order value, and deliver special guest experiences that fuel repeat business,” he adds.
Anna Jones, Chief Marketing Officer at Guzman Y Gomez, says that millennials expect a lot from a mobile app, so they underwent a stringent redesign that incorporated a lot of features that customers wanted.
“When relaunching our mobile app, we worked directly with our loyalty members to understand where the pain points were on our current app and to help develop a new experience that aligned with their needs.”
Jones estimates that millennials make up 56% of the Guzman Y Gomez customer base, which makes them an “incredibly important” market.
“The millennial generation wants a level of personalisation and to be acknowledged by the brands they stay loyal to. It’s about listening to what the millennial generation wants and ensuring we are staying up to date if not ahead of the curve,” says Jones.
Meanwhile, Gaye Steel, Head of Marketing at Mad Mex Fresh Mexican Grill, says that the mobile app has been popular among millennials that frequent their stores.
“We know that our millennial customers prefer to use an app to identify themselves as loyalty members, review their rewards balance and to a lesser degree view menus and prices,” says Steel.
For many QSR brands, a mobile app can also help gather more insights about millennials, their current habits, and how to keep them coming back.
“It is important for us to deeply understand our target customer, the customer journey within a digital ecosystem and the pathways to engagement,” says Steel.
A mobile app with customization features can also signal to millennials that a QSR brand is catering to their unique needs as an individual, resonating with the cohort’s need for tailored service.
“Food and beverage operators have long suspected that millennials not only want personalized service, but want it tailored for them. Survey results validate that hunch,” says Adams.
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