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Beyond Food, Alcohol and Ambience: 10 Ways to Create a Superlative Customer Experience in the F&B Sector Customers today are looking for a place which could pamper their needs while serving them food and its the pampering which brings the customer back to you

By Rohit Maingi

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Food, alcohol and ambience have always been the topmost priority for any restaurant to create a word of mouth for themselves among their customers. But the continuous rising competition in the F&B sector has created a demand to go beyond the food, alcohol and ambience to create the best customer experience. With the rising options, people aren't just looking for a commodity anymore, they want an experience while the dining out.

Here are 10 ways to go beyond food, alcohol and ambience to create the superlative customer experience.

  1. Customer Engagement Through Social Media - There is no question on how social media is appealing to the millennials. Introducing your customer experience through social media could be the best platform to engage more and more customers to visit your restaurant. Serving post worthy platters have unquestionably accelerated the millennials, compelling their restaurants visits more eventful and fun. Introducing new offers, discount coupons or even social media challenges are making a customer visit the restaurant more often. Few social media challenges, not only just make a customer visit eventful, but also, create a word of mouth for themselves, introducing themselves to the new customer base.

  2. Season Based Offers - India is known for its various festivals and traditions. Introducing them to your restaurant's menu or via season based events will help the customers to engage more with the restaurant. Just like organizing a Dandiya night during Navratras, or introducing a special Navratra menu.

  3. Open House - People mostly tend to believe what they see. Once in a while, organizing an open kitchen for your customers could be a good deal to add them in the list of your regulars. It will also create a good customer experience as people would love to see what they are consuming. There is no better way to tap into the experience economy by inviting them behind the scenes.

  4. Delivering Personal Touch - As much as the society today embraces Technology, human element must not be overlooked, while seeking to provide your guest a memorable and distinctive experience. People like to share the feedback of any services or product or commodity they have been using. Creating this as a personal experience, reaching out to the people at your restaurant for your valuable feedback, would not only help you to improvise your services but also create a personal relationship with your customers. Delivering personal touch is not just limited to the feedbacks, but also, celebrating your customers, like providing an "on the house' birthday cake for the customer who has visited your place to celebrate their birthday.

  5. Giving Control to Your Customers - Having a great consumer engagement is all about the customers and what they want to experience. Customers always relish the ability to customize, so, providing them with the control over by customized dishes or self-ordering Buffet, will help the restaurant provide their customers with a distinctive experience.

  6. Educating the Masses - People love to listen to a story. Sharing your story with the food or ambience will help you engage more with your customers. They tend to visit your place more often when they know about you. Selling a story works the best in terms of marketing your place.

  7. Offering Shows - People just need a reason to celebrate. The celebration could also be a football match or a cricket match or any other huge event happening around the world. Staying at home and watching your TV set is passé. They would love to enjoy the special offers on food and drinks while cheering for the show.

  8. Events and Activities - events and activities are no doubt one of the best ways to create customer experience since ages. With the rising competition among all the food service providers, they organize their own events and activities. You need to keep in mind how unique your idea is how engaging it is to society.

  9. Customer Loyalty Programs - Foodservice operators focus a lot on the new customers, forgetting that around 50per cent of the income is generated through the regulars. The customer loyalty programs like, special coupons for the regulars, discount offers, customized parties only for regulars or awards by the restaurants make the customer feel the self-involvement with the restaurant. Such loyalty programs will also help restaurants to encourage loyal customers to create a word of mouth for themselves.

  10. Leveraging Technology - As mentioned earlier, technology is ingrained in modern life and plays a pivotal role in customer experience today. Creating in-house online offers, like, posting a picture using a certain hashtag which will in turn avail some discount or offers. Such activities will help the customers engage more with the restaurant, and the exciting offers would compare them to visit the restaurant more often. This would also help the restaurant to create user-generated content. As we know our customers are savvier today, and would definitely want to look out for the review before visiting your place.

Rohit Maingi

Owner, Bottles and Barrels

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