Leveraging location-based services
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During the past year or so, 300,000 consumers have downloaded Krispy Kreme’s “Hot Light” app. The free app works by pinging customers when their local Krispy Kreme, or the store closest to them, has fresh doughnuts available.
“For us, the ‘Hot Light’ app was exactly what our consumers wanted,” said Dwayne Chambers, chief marketing officer at the company. “They always want to know when the doughnuts are hot.”
The app goes so far as to give traveling app users directions to the nearest store. It’s a way to directly drive conversions into Krispy Kreme stores.
“I’m just amazed,” Chambers said of the response to the app. The company has about 250 U.S. locations, he said, which makes the 300,000 domestic downloads impressive.
Krispy Kreme also doesn’t plan to other apps any time soon. “Most of our energy is going into the Hot Light app,” Chambers said. “You could come up with a doughnut game, but with games, people get bored and kind of move on. We have a practical app.”
That practical approach may make sense for some brands, according to Sandelman & Associates' Miller. Finding a restaurant is the No. 1 way quick-service consumers use their smartphones to engage with restaurants, he noted.
“While there’s clearly an opportunity to engage with your customers on smartphones, the most important thing you can do is to make your locations easy to find,” he said.
The Krispy Kreme app, he said, is a good example of this function —“combining both that location finder and updated, relevant information.”
Contact Erin Dostal at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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