PHYGITAL MARKETING: NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR RESTAURANTS17/03/2023
Online and offline are not two sides of the same coin anymore. Since we are all online, all the time, it should not come as a surprise the recent approach that combines physical presence with digital engagement called “phygital” marketing.
If on the one hand restaurants need to keep satisfying their customers’ needs, on the other hand customers expect the same level of personalization and accessibility in person as they do online. In this scenario, applying the phygital marketing approach to the industry seems the most sensible choice.
As the phygital approach is all about improving engagement, this can start before entering the restaurant by promoting online pre-orders and table reservations. QR codes are still widely used yet an in-app booking journey – when it is well designed – already sets the customer in the right mood and statistically increases the number of people who make reservations. Given the growing percentage of customers who prefer touchless payments and self-checkout options, once inside the restaurant they should also be able to pay in-app, either by card or using other providers.
Another opportunity to improve engagement and build brand trust comes via music, as it can significantly affect the emotions of diners. To make a positive impact on customers, each restaurant should choose music that reflects its brand values. Online platforms help, yet fully licensed music, tailor-made for businesses is fundamental.
The visual experience should be personalized as well. Restaurants that use personally branded visuals benefit from showing pre-approved content that informs an actively engaged audience. Some restaurants have already taken the visual experience to a higher level by offering a multi-sensory dining experience which either combines VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) or uses 3D projection mapping technology to entertain guests while they wait for their meal.
When done right, phygital marketing bridges the gap between a human being – the customer – and a business by unlocking deeper connections. It doesn’t just streamline customer interactions onsite and online, it also helps brands measure their customer experiences with real data.
Consumers have missed the social side of dining for so long that, now more than ever, it is so important to build brand trust and boost sales with a public that is ready to re-engage with dining in person. Taking advantage of growing technologies for an immersive, memorable experience that revolves around the customer is a game-changer for the entire industry.