Mmmm, digital menu boards. It looks almost too good to be true. So mouth-watering. You can’t stop looking at it. That lightly toasted bun sandwiched between a succulent, perfectly-grilled burger. The melting cheese has you in a trance as you watch it slowly dribble down the sides.
Feel like you want a burger like that now? Of course you do! Your stomach’s already grumbling. And it’s not even a real burger, just a slow-motion video of one on a display above the restaurant order counter. Just one of the many magical powers of digital menu boards.
Nowadays, most successful restaurants, realize that the way to a consumer’s stomach begins in their brain. This is even more relevant in the fast food – or QSR (quick service restaurant) – market. You have to a) grab their attention, and b) create memorable experiences so your customers keep coming back for more.
A recipe for success
What’s the perfect recipe for a successful restaurant business? Obviously, you need to get a whole range of things right, but we’d argue that one of your main priorities should be digital menu boards and digital signage for restaurants in general.
Their usage has of course taken off in recent years as more businesses seek new ways to attract customers and increase their profits and revenue streams.
But, is it really the magic secret ingredient that it’s cracked up to be? Our short answer is yes. Why? Because if you use it correctly, the benefits are multiple.
Benefits of digital menu boards
- Attracting consumers’ attention with high-quality videos and images
- Create targeted and seasonal promotions
- Upsell by focusing on high-margin items
- Localized advertising and marketing
- Rotating playlists showing more content than traditional boards
- QR code menus boost social media and customer loyalty integration
- Integration with inventory management systems and point-of-sale (for more efficient service and reduced customer waiting times)
- Can be used for training staff out-of-hours
- Cost-saving: compared to posters and other analog marketing materials it’s both cheaper and greener
The cost factor
But what about the cost? I hear you say. Is it worth the investment? It’s no secret that digital signage requires an initial investment, both for hardware and software. However, based on independent research in the US for example, typically the bulk of average QSR businesses recoup their money within 7-12 months of installation.
As a general rule, you make your money back relatively quickly. The revenue you generate beyond that is profit, with boosts in sales also measured anywhere from 10% to 50% depending on restaurant size and number of displays used, etc.
Before deploying digital menu boards
Apart from entry costs, there are a few vital things to watch out for before you roll out digital signage, however. It can be difficult to appeal to all target consumer groups, so you might have to start slow. Additionally, the choice of vendor is crucial. The partner you select needs to understand your strategy behind using the solution. Also, the full end-to-end implementation of how everything should work together.
The answer? Careful preparation. It doesn’t matter if your business is a small one or a multi-chain franchise. Run a pilot to test it on consumers first. Try out different content types and make sure the synchronization works properly.
Live up to your own hype
All in all the restaurant and QSR industry is ideal for smart digital menu board solutions. With the right balance of displays, application (that’ll be us) and engaging content, you will be a winner in no time. One important thing, which we, unfortunately, can’t help you with but can advise you on. Live up to your hype. By that, we mean ensure that your food matches up to how it’s depicted in your digital signage.
“Look at that. It’s plump, it’s juicy, and it’s three inches thick. Now, look at this sorry, miserable, squashed thing. Can anybody tell me what’s wrong with this picture?”
– William Foster (Michael Douglas)
You’ll probably want to avoid an incident like the notorious scene in the classic film Falling Down, starring Michael Douglas. An unhappy customer will definitely not come back.
As always, if you have any questions, get in touch with us to discuss how we can help your business craft an effective digital signage solution tailored to your needs.