McAlister's Deli to Extend Digital Menu Boards to Corporate Sites
McAlister’s Corporation, a quick-casual restaurant chain with over 300 McAlister’s Deli locations across the U.S., has chosen Wand Corporation after a long term search and selection process. Wand, who represents numerous national brands in the QSR/Fast Casual space, is providing an enterprise level Digital Menu Board solution for all McAlister’s Deli corporate and franchise digital sites. McAlister’s announced the business partnership at its annual Owner/Operator Conference which took place April 26-29, 2011, at the Mirage in Las Vegas. The Wand Digital solution was debuted to their franchisee community at the conference as a complete restaurant mock-up. Included were six 47 inch Digital Menu Boards, two 47 inch digital Point Of Purchase Boards, and two 17 inch digital countertop Customer-Facing Displays.
“McAlister’s worked through a structured search for knowledge and experience in the Digital Menu Board arena, “says Randy White, VP of information technology for McAlister’s Corporation. “With the multitude of options out there, our team ultimately selected Wand as someone who could provide the analytics, rollout, and true partnership in our first pilot locations.”
Grabbing guests’ attention
McAlister’s reported in March that guest reaction has been reflected in double-digit sales increases at the digital locations. Customer surveys have found the Digital Menu Boards to be more engaging than traditional print menu boards, and customers feel the Digital Menu Boards enhance or upgrade the restaurant environment. The unique combination of dynamic content and enterprise controlled day-parting attracts the attention of customers and effectively communicates messaging through the use of animated images and high definition video to influence customer’s buying behaviors.
“We call it our restaurant of the future, “says Annica Kreider, vice president of marketing for McAlister’s Corporation, referring to the digital solution program. “It’s been exciting to see the reaction of guests to the Digital Menu Board system, and impressions from our franchise groups.”
With several corporate sites already installed and showing a positive ROI, McAlister’s Corporation is planning an initiative to rollout the additional corporate stores. The ROI indicates a 12 month break-even point for McAlister’s.
“It all comes down to ROI. We’ve seen consistent results with the various menu items we’ve chosen to promote on our Wand Digital Menu Boards, and we are very satisfied. We’re offering this solution to our entire franchise system,” says Kreider.
COO for Wand Corporation, Greg Perrill says, “We couldn’t be more excited with McAlister’s decision. Our team is geared up for this opportunity, and is committed to our partnership and to helping enhance McAlister’s business through innovative restaurant technology.”
Wand’s creative services, analytics, network operations center, and project management teams supplies all software, hardware, content creation, implementation, deployment, training, and support services for McAlister’s.
“We look forward to future installations and continued development with Wand in this area of marketing, customer education and speed of service, “says White.