Change is the essence of life. This axiom is manifested in all spheres of business including the realms of advertising. In recent times, dynamics in digital advertising adapted by restaurants worldwide presents a case in point.
Conventional business wisdom have warranted that the focus of a restaurant is primarily on its delectable and savory cuisines. It remains predominantly so. However, in a fiercely competitive environment, with varied offerings by numerous restaurants within the same vicinity, there was an increasing need for product differentiation and positioning. Further, the dynamics of consumption habits and studies in consumer behavior made menu presentations a focal point in the marketing strategy of the restaureur.
Static menu boards
For many years, restaurant menus were in the form of a printed list on paper (with prices mentioned ), and/or , a chalk board menu placed just outside it’s front door. Much of this practice still exists today in larger multi-cuisine restaurants.
But for fast food restaurants and restaurants outside the precincts of a town or city, dynamic digital advertising in-house has become the latest fashion statement. In most cases the digital content and graphics are conceived with finesse and panache, while others are flamboyant, ebullient, ostantatious and even bizarre. No one minds though. It’s all within the gamut of advertising with the objective of garnering more customers and increasing sales quickly.
Dynamic menu boards
Technology has a lot to do with this. Computers, videos, animations, digital signage menu boards and LED screens have epitomised a new phenomena, transcending the earlier advertising forms such as neon signs and billboards. Initially ofcourse, the static digital menuboard was used by the marketer, but rapid technological progress and the invention of the media player enabled the restaurant owner to shed all inhibitions and go all out to seduce his target customers with video footage / graphics/ animations of his restaurant’s offerings.
The advantages of a dynamic digital signage board / screen are numerous:-
- It is a cost-effective method of advertising: easy installation and operations: no additional advertising budgets required
- Provides a whole new audio-visual experience: the moving , dynamic images on the screen together with animations and video footage are several steps more effective than all other forms of advertising, including television
- It optimises the digital screen space: updated content: no wastage in content
- Easy screen monitoring / management: through a media player or even the URL provided on a computer
- A single admin system enables editing & updation of content in cases of multi-location stores : can be operated anytime, anywhere
- The bright & bold displays have a scintillating impact: it engages, entertains and informs : even if there is a queue in front of the restaurant, customers are pleasantly engaged by the visuals.
- Enables promotion of up: sells on a particular day, or in a week. This is made possible by announcing the offers only on a digital display screen. These up-sells may or may not be on the menu list : the objective being to escalate sales on volumes on popular items on a given day, or in a particular week.
- Enables promotion of it’s Limited Time Offers – special offerings: the restaurant can market certain items on the menu within a specific time-frame on a day, thereby maximising it’s profit margins on those offerings.
- LED screens are mostly used for digital signage display today. These screens are water and heat resistant. Hence, it’s dynamic graphics, videos, animations have a compelling impact on the target audience
- Increased customer traffic, footfalls and sales – quite often windfall sales , are an efficacious results of digital menu board advertising today.
- Enables the restaureur to provide community service, in addition to displaying his culinary offerings ie, he can convey important local news or events on his digital screen, which is a compelling attraction for all passerbys. Infact, many fast food restaurants and pubs worldwide show sporting events ie, a football match or a baseball match on their digital screen to garner more customers.
- Customized content with branding on a digital screen go a long way in building loyalty & trust: recent servery by Neilsen show that almost 90% of truck drivers, bus drivers, bus passengers and car owners can recall a restaurant’s brand /logo on a highway in California,USA
Hence, dynamic digital signage advertising remains the most effective point- of- sale advertising today. Truly, it has taken advertising to the next level with a fresh adage – all that glitters is gold !