Jason Tober
Blog, Operational Efficiency, Restaurant reporting

Falling in love is pretty easy once you find that special someone. But, getting customers to fall in love with your brand is a whole other story. If you want customers to have a spring in their step and a song in their heart when they think about your brand, then you need to make an emotional connection.

But how, you ask, can brands tug at the heartstrings of their customers and build worthwhile connections? Many brands have used big data to strengthen their relationship with longtime and new customers. Let’s see how you can do the same.

What is big data?

Understanding what this term means is the first step to benefiting from it. Forbes defines big data as “a collection of data from traditional and digital sources inside and outside your company that represent a source for ongoing discovery and analysis.”

Basically, it’s traditional data, but bigger, more complex, and more insightful. With more access to data and more powerful computers to crunch it, big data creates opportunities to analyze and improve your relationships with your customers like never before.

How big data affects the way you serve customers

Big data allows restaurants to see the results of big and small experiments. This helps leadership make quick decisions about things like menus and customer service. So, what are some of the top ways big data is being used?

  • Testing strategies: Restaurants are constantly looking for ways to improve their pricing, menu items, and operations. Big data allows them to quickly see the results of a strategy at a test location and make the decision to roll it out to multiple locations.
  • Optimizing the menu: A study from Cornell University revealed that menu items that are emphasized with bold or colored text, or inside a text box, tend to sell better. You can find similar insights when using big data. Testing different menu designs and formats is a quick win you can achieve with big data.
  • Choosing promotions: Aggregating your POS, marketing, and even social media data can help you understand which promotions actually get customers in the door. This is extremely valuable for earning customer loyalty.

These are only a few of the many ways you can use big data to improve service and build sales and customer loyalty. It’s effective because it helps you do more of the things your customers love.

When customers see that you continually provide exactly what they want, they feel like you understand them. This starts to build an emotional connection (the strongest type of connection) and helps them fall in love with your brand.

Implementing big data insights

In the coming months and years, you’ll see more franchise decisions that are based on big data. While these insights are effective, they aren’t the end-all, be-all of running a profitable restaurant. To get the most out of big data, you need to succeed at customer service at all of your locations. Using a system like the Net Promoter Score is the first step to understanding the effectiveness of your service and happiness of your customers.

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