Details of the restaurant experience conquer customer loyalty and positive word of mouth

Usually, brands spend big budget on marketing to attract new clients in their stores, however they forget that, once entered, the Customer needs to stay and afterwards he needs to be persuaded to come back.

Consequently, for a brand, if on one hand it’s fundamental to attract new clients to build up the foundation of success, on the other its development will depend mainly on satisfied and enthusiastic Customers who want to come back after their experience. Or, even better, they want to suggest your brand to friends and colleagues.

But then, what is the moment in which the Customer is more willing to listen to what the brand has to say, other than the moment in which the client spends time in his shop, in his store or pub? Online and offline ads, even if striking, can surprise a busy Customer who is not careful or inclined to accept inputs since she is taking care of other businesses. However, when the client enters the store, he “lowers his defenses” and he is ready to be overwhelmed by the proposal of the brand that, obviously, need to be absolutely up to the expectations of an increasingly demanding Customer.

Moreover, investing in the so called “in store marketing” is not particularly expensive since we are talking about measures that needs to be implemented anyway because they are part of the layout and the format of the store. Additionally, it’s a unique occasion to tell the Customer your story, your values, your identity, to create an affinity and an empathy that will make the client a promoter of your brand in his own way (small, but probably extended, given the viral nature of social networks.

Let’s take the case of a restaurant, a bar, a pizzeria or an ice-cream shop: given the typology of business and the target, every company needs to printout the packaging for the takeaway, trays, napkins and so on and so forth… According to Mike Wolfsohn, of the High Wide & Handsome, Californian communication agency, “we are considering materials that are usually accounted in normal budgets of restaurants and that are usually produced and utilized. Thus, they are the perfect mean to spread your message without increasing costs”. Exactly in the moment in which you customer has taken some time to sit comfortably and dedicate some minutes (in the worst case scenarios) to her meal.

The Product Evaluation Inc, research agency specialized in the “food service” in the state of Illinois, has performed an investigation among regular clients aging between 18 and 65 years of several restaurants in order to identify what are the messages and the means that stimulate the highest customer loyalty and the highest positive word of mouth. Tablecloths, placemats, napkin rings and menus are the best objects to catch and retain customers’ attention. Additionally, 65% of the people interviewed points out that they are particularly interested in receiving news on the effort that companies place on improving the environment: information on the recycling cycles of materials, descriptions on the usage of energy or on the techniques used to build up stores.

The service, is obviously a powerful marketing tool inside the restaurant (as we have already described deeply in our investigation of the reception phase inside the stores of Milan), able to give many information on the identity and the values of the brand.

An extremely satisfactory Customer Experience inside your stores will facilitate the birth and the diffusion of a positive word of mouth that will enhance your client base, leading to the success of the brand. Specifically, there are many opportunities to create a satisfactory Customer Experience, even for the most demanding clients, they are called “touchpoints”: in other words the points of interaction between the client and the company or the brand. Italian Customer Intelligence has started a journey which leads our readers to discover the touchpoints of different industries: discover the ones of the Restaurant Industry or the ones of Fashion Retail!