- Data is a driving force behind TGI Fridays, explained the chain’s senior director of digital Chris Hansen.
- He gave the example of a man in Buffalo, New York, who ordered the same entree 52 times in a year: Cajun shrimp and pasta to-go.
- Though this is a relatively extreme example, Hansen said that the company took this information and began to change their strategy of communicating with him, tailoring messages to him around the time when he would generally order.
- “So data is going to be a driving force behind everything that we do and we can’t have enough of it,” Hansen said during a panel at the eTail West conference in Palm Springs, California. “We just have to mine it correctly.”
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PALM SPRINGS, Calif. — Understanding and connecting with customers is a driving force behind the business of TGI Fridays.
The restaurant chain relies on gathering and analyzing consumer data, something that senior director of digital Chris Hansen explained can be used to connect more deeply with customers.
During a panel at the eTail West conference in Palm Springs, California, Hansen gave the example of a specific data collection scenario that helped him learn more about one consumer.
He said that he noticed that a man in Buffalo, New York, ordered the same entrée 52 times in one year. Cajun shrimp and pasta to-go.
Hansen said that specific details about this order helped him understand and predict more details about the consumer. For example, the Buffalo man ordered the same meal, generally on Fridays, at around 6:00 p.m.
“Obviously you’re getting off work, you want to pick it up on your way home,” Hansen surmised about the customer’s behavior.
The next step, Hansen said, is figuring out how to most meaningfully connect with this customer in a way that tailors to past behavioral patterns. With careful tailoring, the consumer might even be able prompted to change his or her behavior and do something different.
Hansen said email is TGI Friday’s most active channel for connecting with consumers. TGI Fridays also uses artificial intelligence to send targeted messages to customers, which the Wall Street Journal reported helped increase engagement and orders for the chain overall.
“So data is going to be a driving force behind everything that we do and we can’t have enough of it,” said Hansen. “We just have to mine it correctly.”