December 13, 2014 – This week, restaurant brokers Eric and Robin Gagnon are talking about restaurants moving into the digital age with John Valentine, Vice President of LevelUp, Austen Mulinder, CEO of Ziosk and Andrew Waber, Market Analyst of Chitika.
How are restaurants using new technology in the digital age? How is this affecting the customer and customer service experience? The restaurant brokers asked a panel of experts in the field to weigh in on these and other questions. Austin Mulinder of Ziosk says “technology will gather new data about guest preferences.” According to the panel, gathering data on customer preferences and habits will be key to innovation in the industry. The use of this data will, in the words of Andrew Waber, “enhance the experience for guests.”
What about service? Will new technology eliminate the need to staffing? Austin Mulinder says that technology is “an extension of the server model, not a replacement of the service model.” He elaborates saying that technical support means servers spend “less time back of house at the POS terminal and more time one on one with the guests.”
The advancements in digital delivery via phones was also a topic of conversation on the restaurant radio show. John Valentine of LevelUp says, ““Customers want to be marketed to. People want to be engaged with.” What does that mean? For one thing, restaurants must adjust offerings onto mobile devices.
Join the restaurant brokers as they Satisfy your appetite for acquisition, Feed the need for restaurant reality and Serve up a recipe for business success. Our guests discuss how restaurants are adapting to the digital age and what technology is on the horizon. Listen to the entire restaurant radio show live on Atlanta radio station WGKA, TALK 920 on Saturday at noon or the rebroadcast Sunday at 1 PM on Biz 1190.
This Week’s Guests:
John Valentine, LevelUp
John leads LevelUp's enterprise team in selling custom-branded mobile payment and loyalty apps to growing quick serve and fast casual restaurants across the country. Current clients include: sweetgreen, Argo Tea, Hale and Hearty, Protein Bar, and Fresh To Order.
John graduated from Tufts University with a BA in Economics and from Villanova University with a JD. Upon passing the bar in MA and RI, John joined SCVNGR as an early employee. Now LevelUp, the company has built itself into the largest mobile payment network in the US.
Austen Mulinder, Ziosk
Austen Mulinder brings more than 25 years of experience in managing global sales, marketing and operations. He most recently served as corporate vice president of Operator Channels at Microsoft and previously served as corporate vice president for the communications sector, where he led strategy, sales and marketing of Microsoft services and solutions to telecommunications, hosting, media and entertainment companies. Before joining Microsoft, Austen served for six years as president and CEO of Fujitsu Transaction Solutions Inc., a wholly owned Fujitsu company. During his tenure there, he led the company's transformation into a leading retail technology solutions vendor.
Andrew Waber, Chitika
aber is a Market Analyst at Chitika, an online ad network based outside of Boston, and also serves as the lead author of reports for Chitika Insights, the company’s independent research arm. Studying a variety of topics relating to how users interact with the online world, Andrew’s commentary on given Chitika Insights studies has been quoted by The New York Times, CNN Money, and The Guardian, among other outlets.