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Posted May 18, 2017 by Zenreach

How To Boost Customer Loyalty for Your Bar or Restaurant

There are several types of customer loyalty programs, ranging from the basic to the overly elaborate. For instance, the card your barber stamps each time you get a haircut is a very simple form of a customer loyalty program. But this solution isn’t ideal for a restaurant or bar in 2017. You don’t want someone to miss out on their rewards just because they forgot their card at home!

You also want to make sure you don’t lose out on the real value of customer loyalty programs – getting to know your customers. In its purest form, customer loyalty is an exchange of information. Customers provide their information so you can understand their purchase behaviors and in turn engage with them on a personal level. That’s not something you can achieve with a punch card. 

Once you have attained these loyal customers, it’s also important to retain them. Here are some quick tips for boosting your customer loyalty.

Gestures of Goodwill

The long echoed sentiment that “it’s the thought that counts” applies here. In creating reciprocity and positive feelings in other people, it really is the thought that counts. Random gestures of appreciation such as remembering a customer’s birthday or a personalized email newsletter are great ways to thank them and build customer loyalty. You could also try offering a simple discount or a free dessert! These programs are an effective way to increase your customer’s appreciation to your restaurant. When customers know that their visit is appreciated and likely to be rewarded, it will also make them more inclined to come back to your restaurant when they decide to go out again! 

Customers who feel loyal to their bar or restaurant of choice will regularly return and provide recommendations to friends and family, helping your business expand even further. They can also take it to the Internet and leave your business a positive and glowing review.

Note: Be conscious of who you give special treatment. Make sure your gestures are distributed fairly and keep track of your regular customers.

Social Media 

Your customers enjoy using social media as a means to engage not only with their friends and family but also with their favorite restaurants and brands. When you establish a strong social media presence, you create an opportunity to connect with your customers and learn more about them.

Social media is extremely cost effective as the platforms are usually free to register for and use. It also serves as an excellent source of free advertising! When your followers interact with your brand, it automatically shows up in the newsfeeds and streams of their networks. For example, if a customer comments on an upcoming event on your Facebook page, their friends will be able to see the event as well. Not only will this create additional brand awareness for your restaurant, but when people see their friends vouch for a restaurant or bar online, they will be more inclined to try it for themselves. Leveraging social media will help create this domino effect. You can also be sure that this generates organic and authentic content for your business such as genuine reviews, photos and videos.

Collect Feedback and Make Improvements  

When you collect feedback from customers consistently, you know you are building your brand in the right direction! A great way to collect feedback is to reach out to the customer immediately after they have visited your restaurant. This way the memory they have of your establishment remains fresh, and the feedback they provide will be more accurate.   

Collecting feedback can come in many different forms depending on your business. It could be in the form of surveys, physical feedback forms or an email form. Using a program that automates this process will save you time and money.

So now you are getting lots of feedback, which is awesome. What do you do with this feedback?

When filtering through feedback, you’re trying to pick up trends. While it is important to respond or take note of every feedback, priority should be given to feedback that is not so positive. Make an effort to personally reach out to find out what went wrong, and find a solution to the problem. This is also a good preventive measure from having your business’ reputation tarnished online. Sometimes it may be hard and overwhelming to sieve through multiple feedback forms. Using a software that automatically reminds you of a negative review and responding it before it gets posted online is a great way to maintain your restaurant’s reputation.

If you use a technology like Zenreach, you can also use WiFi-enabled smart marketing to automatically track customer visits bringing loyalty programs to a whole new level. For example, maybe you want to offer a free glass of wine on every 10th visit. Instead of doing punch cards or a separate app, Zenreach will let you do that automatically through WiFi. All you have to do is set up the marketing once and we take care of the rest!

The best thing?

The results with Zenreach are 2x better than traditional loyalty programs! Businesses who use Zenreach see, on average, that guests who access the free WiFi visit 65% more than guests who don’t. That’s an incredible number, one that will have lasting impact on your bottom line.

Want more information on Zenreach on how to run a hands-free loyalty program and boost your customer loyalty?


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Categories

Bars Customer Loyalty Restaurants