Merchant: Jersey Mike’s Subs
Size: 750+ locations
Bottom Line: Integrated digital marketing programs make it easier for companies to gather useful customer data.
When it comes to hyperlocal tools, the whole is often greater than the sum of its parts. That’s what Jersey Mike’s chief marketing officer Rich Hope has discovered since launching a redesigned mobile application that integrates online ordering with a customer loyalty program earlier this year. “I don’t think anybody has combined the loyalty program and online ordering yet and completely integrated the two,” Hope says.
Customers who download the Jersey Mike’s mobile app can locate the nearest location, get driving directions using GPS, place an order through their smartphones, and automatically earn loyalty points based on the size of their orders. Frequent customers can pull up past purchases and place re-orders in as little as two taps. They can also include their orders in status updates, posted on social media networks like Facebook and Twitter. “You can post that you just bought a No. 13 at Jersey Mike’s,” Hope says. “While I myself wouldn’t be inclined to do that, there are many people who are.”
Although social sharing is an important part of the Jersey Mike’s digital strategy, Hope says it presents a challenge as far as tracking is concerned. It’s much easier to pull data from an internal source, which is where the company’s integrated mobile ordering system and loyalty program come into play. “There are certain things that are easy to measure. For instance, when you do an offer to your loyalty members and you see the exact sales results on that day. That can be very, very easy to track,” Hope says. “We have all the data for every customer that comes in, and all the transactions that are made.”
Hope and his team are just starting to dive in and look at how they can use the data they’re collecting. In the coming months, they hope to be able to send individual messages via email, text or alert to loyalty program members who haven’t come in for a pre-determined amount of time. “You could do similar things with dayparting. If someone is a dinner customer but never comes in for lunch, we’re wondering, why don’t you come in for lunch? We can isolate all the people who have never come in for dinner but have come in for lunch six or more times in the last four months, and send them an offer for dinner,” Hope says.
Jersey Mike’s has partnered with Splick-it to develop and manage its online order system, a process Hope says was made easier because Jersey Mike’s franchises use a single POS system that was developed in-house. “The biggest technology challenge is really the integration with the technology system, and it’s a bigger challenge for some other companies because some large players in the QSR space — with 2,000 or 6,000 stores — have six or seven different POS systems that don’t talk to each other. Then you have to integrate with all of them, and that would create a myriad of nightmares,” Hope says. “Fortunately, because we have our own POS system in place, that process was easier for us.”
Hope is watching mobile usage trends closely and making the necessary adjustments to his company’s digital strategy based on what he sees. He’s found that customers are more likely to order from their desktops or smartphones when the process is fast and seamless, and says that integrating a mobile ordering system with the Jersey Mike’s loyalty program has given him access to customer spending trends and purchasing data that would impossible to track otherwise.
Stephanie Miles is an associate editor at Street Fight.