Restaurants and Tech Firms Partner via Digital Menu Boards


Restaurants are turning to digital signage in record numbers to engage customers and enhance their internal marketing. Companies recognize the revenue and cost-cutting benefits of moving away from traditional static displays and, by using data to drive digital content, ensuring that the right message is being shown to the right people, at the right time. The technology, whether digital message boards alone or when partnered with compatible tech companies, can increase sales and develop customer loyalty and, at the same time, create additional revenue streams through vendor partnerships.

 Kitchen 67 Café in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has partnered with a neighboring Verizon retail store. Through the use of digital signage, customers waiting for phone service can order food within the restaurant and be cued when it’s their turn to receive sales assistance next door. On the flip side, the Verizon store offers smartphones, tablets and other devices that customers can explore while waiting for their food. The partnership enhances the customer experience for both establishments.

 The café offers additional tech features, including Qi wireless charging spots embedded in the restaurant’s tables; iTunes digital jukeboxes located at tables and throughout the store; a Pepsi fountain with interactive projected display; digital signage screens featuring menu specials, Twitter feeds, stock feeds, ads and sports; LED ceiling panels for “mood” dining experiences; and free high speed wireless access. The technology for the restaurant was coordinated by LiveSpace of Grand Rapids.

 Other chains and independent casual restaurants are also using a variety of tech-based marketing to entice and keep customers.

 For example, Highlands Digital Media is providing a digital menu board solution to quick-service restaurant chain Sneaky Pete’s newest franchise in Margaret, Alabama, according to a company press release. The boards include static and video images.

 “The ability to include video within the menu board design is invaluable,” Kevin Gustin, vice president, creative director for Means Advertising, said in the release. “Seeing video of our food on a large screen at the point of ordering is the best possible way to drive sales. The video menu boards allow us the ability to have a completely different look for breakfast and for lunch. This gives us maximum design flexibility.”

 Shoeless Joe’s sports bar chain has opted for interactive touch screen menu boards as a way of enticing sport fans, implementing the screens into their flagship restaurant in Toronto. The digital signage is directed toward passersby, enticing them to come into the bar by visually advertising food and drink specials. The installation, carried out by RadiantGroup, runs an Acquire Digital software solution.

 Coca-Cola in Australia has linked with Telstra, Austalia’s largest telco, to deploy 3,000 digital signage screens in bars and restaurants. The displays will serve as free Wi-Fi hotspots for consumers who buy Coke products.

Digital menu boards can help casual fast food restaurants improve their bottom line by increasing sales, reducing printing and static signage costs and enhancing the guest experience, while integrating with your point of sale accounting system. Partnerships with telcos and other tech companies offer opportunities for enhanced exposure and creative marketing experience.



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