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Restaurants & Related Trades | Challenges after COVID




In the highly competitive food and beverage industry, retaining customers is essential for long-term success. With the rise of digital transformation, businesses can now use technology to enhance the customer journey and build stronger relationships with their customers.



GreenTomato Academy and the Hong Kong Federation of Restaurants & Related Trades (HKFORT) jointly held the "Digital Business Seminar", and invited 2 speakers: Ravel Lai, an expert in IT and digital marketing and university lecturer, and Karen Leung, Vice President of advertising platform Hotmob share their insights on how to stand out in the highly competitive catering industry by utilizing data analysis and precise advertising. Mr. Winston Yeung, Chairman of the HKFORT as well as Executive Director of Fulum Group Holdings Limited, Winston mentioned that with rapid changes in consumer behavior and the business environment after the epidemic, he aims to respond to market changes through various digital transformation solutions, helping the catering industry turn challenges into opportunities.


"Positive reviews from customers serve as highly persuasive promotion."


Ravel highlights the importance of leveraging various catering technology and information platforms to effectively improve customer retention and loyalty. Carefully analyzing every detail of existing customers' purchasing process and enhancing the customer experience (Customer Journey) are key to boosting retention rates.


Ravel also shares successful examples, such as offering real-time limited-time discounts tailored to different weather conditions to communicate with customers in real-time, strengthening customer loyalty (Social CRM), stimulating revisits, and transforming customers into a potent promotional tool.



"Tailored promotions concentrate time, resources, and efforts on the right customers."


Karen recommends analyzing customer data and engaging new audiences across various channels. It is essential to first comprehend the preferences of fresh target segments, including their typical spend, retention, revisit frequency, and purchasing habits. Moreover, interacting with new customers through various social media platforms and mobile apps aids in developing more impactful business strategies and allocating resources effectively.


One way to enhance the customer experience is to utilize various catering technology information platforms, such as social media and mobile applications. By interacting with customers through these channels, businesses can better understand their preferences and needs, and tailor their products and services accordingly. Offering personalized promotions and discounts based on customer data can also enhance the customer experience and encourage repeat business.


During Q&A session, attendees voiced anxieties surrounding attracting new customers and the possible mismatch between marketing investments and outcomes. They wondered where and how to initiate their efforts, worried promotional spend might not translate to desirable results. In response, Karen proposed tailored social media plays designed for distinct demographic segments and networks, noting a one-size-fits-all approach would not suffice. She also recommended leveraging Big Data analytics of location data, usage insights across 30 million digital devices to gain essential customer knowledge informing strategy.


Additionally, Ravel emphasized the importance of Social CRM, utilizing information from existing patrons to craft more relevant engagements while leveraging their recommendations as a mechanism of acquiring new customers.


Join us an 8-hour in-depth session with Ravel Lai, the main lecturer of GreenTomato Academy on strategically apply customer journey mapping to improve customer relationships and loyalty: https://www.greentomato.academy/social-crm-application-and-platform-workshop


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