At the top of the year, many Marketers reflect on the strategies that worked in 2018 so they can hit the ground running and prepare for the quarters ahead. And while some trends aren’t new, a few are definitely in the forefront and here to stay in 2019.
Chatbots: The future of lead generation is Chatbots. Chatbots are on the rise and taking over customer service for many brands. But, don’t just take my word for it. Gartner predicts by 2020, 85% of customer interactions are predicted to be dealt with by Chabot’s.
You can try out this feature with SMS and Facebook Messenger. Start by setting up this option for your restaurant on Facebook and setting up an auto responsive message. Receiving questions about operation hours for the holidays or reservations during your busiest season? Include a response with this information – or any of your restaurant’s most frequently asked questions. Don’t have an answer to a question? Set up an auto-message with an expected wait time or instruct the customer to call the restaurant directly for immediate assistance.
Not only are bots an effective way of scaling communication, it allows for an around the clock two-way communication channel between your business and audience. In addition to boosting customer satisfaction, Chatbots will also boost your response rate on Facebook – improving SEO and the likelihood of your restaurant being recommended by others.
AR & VR: Augmented and Virtual Realities are both features that many digital marketers have discussed frequently over the last year, or two. Users not only want to be engaged in experiences, they also desire to be an active participant in brand messaging. Augmented and Virtual Realities (AR and VR) can fulfill both of these needs, offering brands tremendous opportunities in the field of customer experience.
Fishbowl’s Chief Analytics Officer, Mike Lukianoff, says “Some very simple uses of AI and machine learning techniques can create incredible efficiencies within complex processes quickly and more cost effectively than trying to fully replace the need for human thought.”
According to a National Restaurant Association interview with Jinsoo An, CEO of startup, Project Nourished, experiments with AR by using variations like movement, color and changing shapes to change the pleasure we get from eating is important to diners. Even the perception of flavor is an important factor for users while dining at their favorite restaurant.
One of the most tangible payoffs of AR/VR technology is using it for employee training and making it convenient for employees to safely interact with their job surroundings. VR use can also save a company thousands of dollars.
Augmented Reality needs AI, Artificial Intelligence, in order to be effective.
Transparency: With the amount of readily available online information from reviews to images of food, diners are more clued in on the shortcomings of brands and food products offered.
It’s important to ensure that all photos of your dishes are updated and accurate on your website and social channels. Additionally, ensuring accuracy and understanding the way you describe your restaurant’s ambiance in the about and history sections on Facebook and other review sites like TripAdvisor and Yelp, can determine if you’ve captured the attention of your customer.
Marketing Automation: If you thought for a moment email marketing would eventually fade to black, you may want to think again. Email marketing is still the number one way to interact with your customers in the restaurant industry. The future of marketing automation and lead generation is also artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Mobile Marketing: If you haven’t adopted a mobile marketing strategy, you’re missing out. It is important to optimize your marketing campaigns in your restaurant for mobile users beginning with image resolution, responsiveness, and overall menu layout and visibility to users. Even the content layout and call-to-action placement in your email promoting the next wine dinner is crucial. More than 1.2 billion people worldwide use mobile with nearly 70% of users viewing their content on mobile devices.
This blog was written by Courtnee Davis.