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05/31/2022

Rising Star Helps Restaurants Unlock the Power of Personalization

Jessica Valenzuela, CEO and Co-Founder, GoGoGuest, was presented with the Rising Star award at MURTEC.
Anna Wolfe
Senior Editor - Restaurants
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Jessica Valenzuela
Jessica Valenzuela, CEO and Co-Founder of Gogoguest, is jazzed about the restaurant industry's curiosity and excitement about customer personalization

Jessica Valenzuela, CEO and Co-Founder, GoGoGuest, was presented with the Rising Star award at MURTEC.

Valenzuela’s love of food led her down a winding path to create a technology solution.  She worked in the front of house of a restaurant during college and that piqued her interest in using technology.  After a year of traveling and years of digital and technology experience, Valenzuela had an epiphany for her next venture: to help coffee shops create more value from their storefronts. “As we explored different edge cases from the angles of the guest experience, marketing and operations, we discovered a common issue - the restaurant industry suffers from disjointed data and a lack of focus,” Valenzuela recalls. “The result is a failure to leverage the right data to understand their marketable audience and align their product mixes with what people are buying.”

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To solve these challenges, GoGoGuest was created as an intuitive guest relationship platform that empowers restaurants of any size to incentivize and strengthen connections with customers across all sales channels.

“I love being at the intersection where cloud technology, design and data meet. I'm passionate about creating and growing frictionless solutions for restaurants and their guests,” she says.

Valenzuela was nominated by several of her restaurant clients, including Mark Harvey from Edley’s Restaurant Group, who has been a client since 2019.   

“The GoGoGuest platform has also helped us maintain a high level of engagement (more than 80%) with our local customers while expanding our active email list to more than 35,000 contacts,” Harvey stated.

Furthermore, “she embodies what the hospitality and restaurant industries are about. She’s all about doing what’s right for restaurants. When we needed her help, Jessica rolled up her sleeves and dove in,” Harvey wrote in his nomination.

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top women award winner

“She’s dedicated to going far beyond what you’d expect from a software provider, is always available when I have questions, and never leaves us feeling like we’re on our own. Jessica’s positivity and passion are infectious, and we’re glad to nominate her!”

The Future is Personalization

Valenzuela is jazzed about the restaurant industry's curiosity and excitement about customer personalization. “A growing number of restaurateurs and operators are seeing the value associated with reaching out to customers at the right moment with the right offer. They want to align their resources, where it makes sense, to serve them more effectively.”

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Restaurateurs also want more control over the guest experience. They're choosing tech stacks that allow them to seamlessly serve guests while also learning how to win them back and turn them into loyal customer, she notes.

Burgers Everywhere

When it come to the future of restaurants technology, Valenzuela sees a future where the physical location is of diminishing importance.  “The dominant brands will be using restaurant technology that is ubiquitous to a physical location,” she predicts.

She points to Virtual Dining ConceptsMr. Beast Burger “as a great example, combining the power of a likable digital influencer with a well-designed technology marketplace and strong supply chain. The brand has been masterful with its ability to mobilize an existing fanbase, quickly opening hundreds of locations across the U.S. in less than two years. The branding is consistent, recognizable and one fans love, and the product connects well with them. Burgers are easy to make, and Mr. Beast's well-built, nicely designed, and easy-to-use branded mobile app gives guests a super-easy way to order.”

Valenzuela is not affiliated with Virtual Dining Concepts, just an admirer of the Mr. Beast Burger brand. “They may have nailed the supply chain management and training to mobilize a network of restaurants,” she said.

When it comes to her career to date, Valenzuela says, I’m proud of what we’re building and growing at GoGoGuest. It’s been the only ‘job’ that has made me excited, motivated, and curious for over six years. I’m constantly learning from my co-Founder, supporting team, and the restaurants we work with daily.”

Being recognized as one ofHT’s 2022 Top Women in Restaurant Technology - Rising Star award is recognition for the entire team, she says.

Valenzuela was one of 10 women recognized in HT’s sixth annual Top Women in Restaurant Technology Awards, sponsored by Tillster, the global leader in powering online ordering and delivery solutions for restaurant brands.  

This award solidifies years of hard work, learning, and attention to detail. We help restaurants with what they overlook, showing them how to understand their customers better and unlock the power of personalization. We want restaurants of all sizes to be capable of reaching out to their guests with the perfect menu item at the precise moment and in the right place,” she says.

Additional MURTEC 22 coverage, including profiles of other Top Women in Restaurant Technology Award winners, can be found here.  HT will profile each of the winners in the summer issue of Hospitality Technology.