What if you could get customers who spend $100 a month to spend $175? Between the average customer coming to a store 40 percent more frequently and the average order size increasing 25 percent, that's exactly what Burger King hopes to accomplish with the help of GoMobo.
Burger King Now, part online and mobile ordering program and part digital loyalty program, launched last Thursday in two New York stores. The initiative will expand to 15 total locations during initial the test-run.
Through the program, customers register for an account with burgerkingnow.com by providing personal and credit card information. Customers can also save favorites and order them via text message.
The program is perfect for a chain like Burger King, which emphasizes made-to-order menu items, says Noah Glass, founder and CEO of mobile ordering company GoMobo.
“It's exactly that customization process that adds to the wait,” Glass says. “It creates frustration for customers that are coming into the store, but it also creates this opportunity for skipping through the line.”
The Burger King Now program is functionally identical to Subway Now, which launched in January, but with the burger chain's branding. It even contains a digital loyalty program similar to Subway's. Subway Now offers a free footling sub when a customer buys three-foot longs within 10 days. Burger King is offering the same deal with its Whopper.
“That has been a very effective way of getting new customers to try the service,” says Evan Sanchez, director of sales and operations at GoMobo.
And instead of rewarding bargain hunters, the loyalty program allows Burger King to invest marketing dollars only in regular customers—“like a mini frequent flier program,” Glass says.
Pickup line signs promote the initiative at participating Burger King stores.
“It's like the first time you saw somebody use an EZ Pass,” Sanchez says, referencing the experience of sitting in line at a tollbooth while watching cars in the automated EZ Pass lane speed by. “It's sort of this feeling of, 'I've got to use that next time.'”
Participating stores are using bag stuffers and table tents to explain the program to customers. Online advertising completes Burger King Now's marketing efforts.
While the program is still in its infancy, Debbie Sena, the Burger King franchise operator whose stores are participating in the test-run, says customers and employees are already buzzing about it.
“All our employees are young, and that's how they live and breathe,” she says. “They're excited about it.”
GoMobo expects Burger King to see a particular increase in large office orders as a direct result of the program.
“The order is organized in advance. It's paid for in advance,” Glass says. “Convenience like this makes Burger King an option for an office administrator.”
And winning office business can translate to between $8,000 to $14,000 a year of additional earnings for quick-serves, according to Technomic.