Having a well-executed loyalty program is bound to increase revenue, brand sustainability and boost growth while helping you better understand your customers. Restaurants with the fine-tuned programs know exactly what outcome they’re aiming for and how to measure success. Once you know what you want to accomplish, you then have to decide what type of program to establish. Here some potential restaurant loyalty program ideas you can try.
1. Print Loyalty Cards
Paper loyalty cards are a fan favorite because of their simplicity and effectiveness. All your employees have to do is hand out a card in-store, and the customer gets a stamp with every purchase or every purchase above a certain threshold. After a certain amount of purchases, they get a discount or a free item. It’s a simple place to start with a loyalty program, and there’s no reason you can’t develop a more complex reward system later down the line.
2. Create a Loyalty App
Having an app is incredibly convenient for both a restaurant and for customers. All they have to do is download the app, create an account and start redeeming rewards. EagleEye Solutions cited in 2017 that 59% of 25-34-year-olds believe it’s important for a loyalty program to offer a digital option. With that in mind, it can be a real benefit to your restaurant to build your program digitally. You’ll easily be able to manage vouchers, bring back return customers, create digital stamp cards and create a sustainable loyalty card.
3. Offer Membership Programs
While a points-based program can be free, you also have the option of creating a membership opportunity. Customers can pay monthly to join and get exclusive access to a particular menu item or exclusive event. If you sell coffee, you can offer them a fixed monthly price for “free” coffee every day. If you’re a bar, you can offer a trivia night promotion where they can come play and have the first drink on you.
4. Encourage Social Sharing
For restaurants and brands that want to build an online presence, this is a very cost-effective strategy that will keep customers coming back in. As an example, you offer a loyalty discount for the top ten social media posts. People that share the best posts of your restaurant or have the most engagement on those posts on Instagram can receive a discount. Or, it can be as simple as a “follow and like us” for a discount in-store.
5. Invest in a Text-Based Loyalty Program
Instead of developing an app, you can invest in a text message marketing program that functions like a loyalty rewards system. Text message loyalty programs are an inexpensive way for restaurants to keep customers coming back. The customer signs up online or in-store by giving their phone number. Then, you send them text messages with loyalty rewards and exclusive discounts. The customers come in more frequently to redeem the rewards. It’s simple and only requires a text message marketing platform to help get you started.