When it comes to apps, create one. But only if you have a purpose and can give the user a reason to download it, keep it relevant and meaningful. So said David Mihalek, Senior Vice President, Digital Strategy & Innovative Solutions at Universal McCann (center), at Thursday's Marketing:QSR.
Admittedly going after Panera, he said whenever he orders on its app, the message is always that it will be ready in 10 minutes. "And it's not," he said. "Improve the relationship you have with me, you're killing me. Help me get my food faster and more accurate. Don't hit me with marketing. Hit me with the message my order is being started. That's the kind of experience I'm willing to trade my personal information for."
Albert Thompson, Managing Director, Digital, Walton Isaacson (right), said it's similar to the way parents of teenagers like himself. "You give [a mobile phone] to them as a tracking device. It becomes a mobile wallet. You can make deposits, it moves behind where they are to facilitating things that don't require a heavy hand for you as a parent.
QSRs shouldn't think of apps as just the ability to ping them with coupons, he said. They should let the consumer know that they are sponsoring concerts, which many of them, to show "what are the bennies I get beyond food and on time.
"When voice ushers in, people are going to have to think about the conversation between QSR and the customer. What will it take to retain a relationship when you consider the influx in the culinary scene."
Amanda Martin, VP of Enterprise Partnerships, Goodway Group, moderated the panel discussion.