Going to restaurants is certainly one of the most popular activities worldwide. Everyone likes to visit his or her favorite restaurant every now and then. Generally, people love to go back to a restaurant again and again because of the food, the service, the interior, and of course, the x-factor which could be from chef to simply the exclusivity and popularity.

The current size of the international foodservice market is in the region of $3,000,000,000,000. No typo there. $3 trillion. Revenue growth in China is running at a double-digit rate. It’s never been easier for food companies to reach their customers. Restaurant delivery has grown 20% in the last five years; while estimates differ, online food delivery sales are estimated to grow as high as $220 billion by 2023 – 40% of total restaurant sales.

Fast food makes up about a quarter of the market with the fastest growing area globally being online food-delivery platforms. These are expanding choice and convenience, allowing customers to order from a wide array of restaurants with a single tap of their mobile phone. At the end of the day though, the largest piece of the revenue pie is generated by the traditional restaurant business and this is set to stay that way for a long time to come. After all, who doesn’t like the experience of getting out and about, having a change of scenery, having zero work to do to prepare it and just getting on with the business of being able to eat delicious food? None of us here at Mitto for a start!

Effective Mobile Engagement has a huge impact on restaurants and the humble SMS is leading the charge. You need to view SMS as the original mobile app. Various studies have shown that even across the smartphone generation, usage of SMS is sky high; almost every single subscriber interacts via SMS at some point each day.

Any restaurant not incorporating A2P (B2C) SMS into their marketing mix or using it for transactional notifications, such as in their table booking process, is missing a trick. Promotions and booking confirmations vie for the top spot where use cases for A2P SMS in the restaurant domain is concerned. With a response rate of 45% (over seven times higher than emails) and given 75% of people prefer to receive offers via SMS than email, it is no wonder!

Restaurants are in the business of making a profit and a sure-fire path to this is ensuring customers are left satisfied. A simple SMS can help here.  Think of something that makes someone smile. Congratulate them on an anniversary, a birthday. Sending holiday greetings. Even just saying a simple ‘hello’ can positively impact a client’s mood. And that, in turn, enhances association with your brand and results in increased loyalty.  Anything that makes your restaurant memorable (in a positive way please – we don’t want to be seeing you on Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares!) and offers a personal angle to service which a client can easily appreciate looks like a sure-fire winner to us.

A critical ingredient in effective restaurant communications is timing; knowing exactly when it is best to engage with your client base is an art form in its own right. Our traffic flows show us that Saturday is the most popular day in the whole week for restaurants and takeaways to send SMS messages and over 90% are sent out between 11 am and 6 pm.

Whatever a restaurant uses in its quest to drive engagement rates higher, the effectiveness of campaigns has to be measured. Here at Mitto, we understand that budgets are not limitless and we do everything in our power to provide the biggest bang for buck from any investment in our services.

Our Messaging platforms incorporate routing logic and ongoing route test capabilities which are second to none. These ensure the successful delivery ratios (rations?) of content sent to your diners are as high as possible. Mitto’s reporting tools allow for SMS response rates to be tracked and provide easy-to-read insights as to how your clients are interacting with your content. Now that is real food for thought. Enjoy your meals out!