Whenever I dine out at a new restaurant, I always like to look into whether or not they have a loyalty program. Obviously I’m interested in saving money – every now and then you’ll find a restaurant offering instant rewards for signing up – but what really piques my curiosity are the different ways restaurants use their programs to creatively engage customers.

One of the most common denominators for many of the most successful and engaging programs that I see is that they’re mobile.

Whether you’re still using a hole-punch card or don’t even have a loyalty program at all, embracing mobile loyalty can yield incredibly fruitful dividends for your restaurant.

It’s time to take your restaurant’s loyalty program mobile. Here’s six reasons why.

Reason #1: They’re convenient. Customers have moved on from physical rewards programs. You should too. Unlike hole-punch cards, customers never have to worry about whether or not they’re carrying something they’ll need. For many loyalty programs, you don’t even need to download an app on your phone. You just need a phone number. That’s true convenience.

On top of that, it’s far easier to get customers to sign up in the first place. Who wants to spend a bunch of time filling out a long form? Not me! And probably not your customers.

Reason #2: Engage instantly. With a mobile loyalty program, you’re gaining the power to promote your restaurant instantly. It’s not just a convenient way to reward customers. It’s a convenient way to communicate with them directly. Whenever and wherever.

Does Happy Hour start soon? Let them know. Is it their birthday? Send them a text letting them know to redeem their free birthday appetizer. The power of instant engagement simply cannot be understated.

Reason #3: Better for younger generations. Convincing Millennial and Gen Z customers to get on board with a physical loyalty program is a pretty hard sell at this point. These generations live and breath on their smart devices. With Gen Z in particular gaining more relevance and spending power with each passing year, there’s a strong imperative to cater to these consumers however possible.

Reason #4: More ways to reward. An important part of maintaining a loyalty program is keeping it interesting. With a digitally-based, mobile loyalty program, your restaurant has more ways to reward customers than ever before. With mobile loyalty, you can delight members with things like contests, polls, games, and more.

Reason #5: Learn more about your customers. With more ways to engage comes more ways to discover. Learning about your customers is easy when you can do it in exchange for a reward. This goes beyond basic demographic data like age, gender, and income. You can learn about customer preferences, and even gain valuable restaurant feedback. What kind of food do they enjoy? What specials do they want to come back? With a mobile loyalty program, these answers are at your fingertips.

Reason #6: Easily re-engage lapsed customers. With a mobile loyalty program, you can track and engage your customers across each and every visit. If a customer hasn’t been in for a while, you can easily re-engage them with a compelling offer to get them back in the door. Whether you’re sending them a personalized offer, or you’re just showing off what they’ve missed (seasonal menus, upcoming events, etc.), the ability to re-engage is a powerful tool.

Mobile Loyalty With CoGoBuzz

With CoGoBuzz, our state-of-the-art marketing service, we make mobile marketing easy and affordable. Our service engages your customers without any of the hassle. Leveraging powerful WiFi, SMS, and Email solutions, we’ll transform your restaurant’s mobile presence, setting it up with a fully-digital, text-based loyalty program.

With a quick, one-time login to your in-restaurant HotSpot, customers are given access to the Internet. They’re taken to a custom landing page, directly designed for your restaurant. There, you can incentivize them to join your loyalty program. You can then run contests, polls, automated messages, and more. You’ll engage your customers whenever, wherever. All with a simple text message.

Click here to learn more about CoGoBuzz!

Has your restaurant given mobile loyalty a shot? Let us know in the comments!