What We’re Following: Mobile Marketing Trends (Updated)

What does the phrase “Mobile Marketing” mean to you? If you’re not entirely sure, rest assured that neither is the rest of the world.  Whether referring to ads on smartphone apps or an actual dedicated smartphone app, deals given to customers who “Check-In”, or any other method for getting people to make an on-the-fly decision to walk through your doors, this fairly ambiguous term has generated an entire ecosystem of its own, each new player offering what they think is the perfect ‘killer-app’ solution. Here’s a round-up of the big trends we’ve been seeing.

In House Flair

Mobile: What Your Customers are Using — Alicia Kelso, FastCasual.com
A brief look at how some brands are starting to slowly integrate mobile into their flow: i.e., texting instead of paging when reservations are ready, on-table card swiping, etc.

Bringing the Restaurant to the Customer

What percentage of restaurants have mobile websites or standard websites? — Quora.com
A question featured on query-heavy platform Quora, with some surprising ( and well-researched!) answers from other users — according to the study mentioned, only 50% of restaurants have a dedicated website!  It’ll be interesting to see how, and if(!), the rate of integration of digital platforms changes for restaurants in years to come.

GrubHub is bringing restaurant ordering into the 21st century — Rocky Agrawal, Venture Beat
A review of online start-up GrubHub, a service company that attempts to connect restaurants and customers via its mobile app.  This article focuses on a new service that tries to integrate the start-up’s service more conveniently with the normal operation of the restaurant.  Psst..it involves a complimentary Kindle Fire!

Coupons, QR Codes, and Who’s Using Them

NRA Show 2012, IWSB in the Palm of Your Hand — Derrek J Hull, National Restaurant Association
This short article just introduces the NRA’s use of QR codes for the Big Show this year.  QR codes are square-shaped patterns of smaller black and white squares that can be read on smart-phones like a standard bar code, typically launching an app or webpage when the code is read.

Everything you need to know about QR codes — Sara Petersen, Restaurant Hospitality
A very nice, quick rundown of what QR codes are (HINT: QR stands for “Quick Response”!), and how you can make use of them in your restaurant.  This article details some of the best uses for these codes, and what sort of support infrastructure they require.  All-in-all, a very non-scary look at a relatively ambiguous topic.  Enjoy!

How RetailMeNot Could Revolutionize the Coupon Biz for Restaurants, Retailers — Derrek J Hull, National Restaurant Association
The NRA blog takes a look at how the ‘largest online coupon site’ is trying to take the embarrassment out of using online discounts in-store, tying the coupons directly to the customer’s credit card, so the discount is applied automatically at purchase…without the awkward shuffle of papers and nervous confessions.

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