A New Digital Champion for Restaurants
With more than 133 years of experience, Coca-Cola’s ultimate goal of helping its restaurant partners grow has remained unchanged, according to Melissa Fahs, VP of Foodservice Digital Commerce for Coca-Cola North America.
“Through the years, there have been technological breakthroughs and disrupters, and we have been at the table as part of the evolution,” Fahs explains. “Over the past few years, digital restaurant technology has exploded. The restaurant industry has been revolutionized by innovative digital offerings. Our customers are working to respond to these changes, to ensure they maintain their guest experience while optimizing operations from end-to-end.”
To do so, Coca-Cola remains focused on prioritizing and collaborating with restaurants on solutions in this evolving digital and tech-enabled restaurant landscape. Thirteen months ago, Coca-Cola Company (us.coca-cola.com) led a $10 million funding round for the point-of-sale connectivity platform, Omnivore (www.omnivore.io).
The two entities subsequently launched a digital menu control panel called Menu Management System (MMS) in May 2019. MMS helps customers smooth the friction of managing the complexity of numerous digital menus across online ordering, third-party delivery apps, menu boards, kiosks and more by creating a single, streamlined way to curate digital menus, pricing and brand standards. The seamless platform helps to reduce the time, money and resources that customers typically spend on technology integration. In June 2019, Coca-Cola launched an Omnivore-enabled digital marketplace to connect customers to industry-best restaurant technologies with competitive pricing.
“We’ve been able to set a platform, allowing us to surface and vet solutions that not only take friction out of third-party delivery with order injection and menu control, but also ready us to leverage other ordering channels on the horizon,” states Russ Bendel, CEO, The Habit Burger Grill (www.habitburger.com), an MMS user.
“Guests are interacting with restaurants more and more outside the four walls of the outlet, through restaurant apps and websites, third-party delivery apps, search, social channels and on rating sites,” says Billy Koehler, Director Digital & Payment Platforms for National Foodservice & On-Premise Marketing at Coca-Cola North America. “It’s essential for restaurants to focus on strengthening their relationships with their guests through these digital touchpoints that can have a positive lift on the overall restaurant and brand experience.”
As a total business partner, Coca-Cola works with its restaurant partners individually to understand their priorities and collaborate to drive value. Koehler says that effective technology integration can increase spend.
“Our platforms can help brands consolidate complex digital menus, and we help take the guesswork out of finding best-in-class IT solutions for their unique needs,” Koehler explains, “whether that be to move away from manual POS updates to free time for other tasks such as greeting and interacting with guests, or encouraging bundles to drive revenue.”