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Customer experience at Red Robin restaurants is booming, CEO Steve Carley said during the company’s fourth-quarter financial results conference call on Feb. 13, and that customer experience will only get better in 2015.
“The key takeaway on the op side is that we continue to take market share in Q4, by focusing on a great Red Robin guest experience in restaurant,” Carley said, according to Seeking Alpha. “On the marketing front, we intend to stay the course by executing on those initiatives that are working so well for us in this very highly competitive environment.”
A key component of Red Robin’s customer-centric focus is its burgeoning loyalty program known as Red Robin Royalty. Red Robin Chief Marketing Officer Denny Post said during the call that the loyalty program added more than 1 million new members in 2014. She said Red Robin sent occasional offers to the new members to maximize incremental business in addition to the base frequency reward program.
“For 2015, we have ambitious goals, as we seek to generate even higher returns from the same level of media year-over-year,” Post added.
Carley said that fourth-quarter results were driven by a return to positive traffic, trade-up to premium products, effective marketing that balanced everyday value on air and the finest line of burgers in restaurant, traction in holiday gift card sales, and growth in the Red Robin Royalty loyalty program.
“In addition, we continue to leverage consumer research, competitive analysis, and a growing understanding of where we win with our guest and where we can improve, so we can capitalize on our two biggest ongoing opportunities, driving consistent positive guest traffic and average check growth that relies on our guest deciding to trade-up or add-on,” Carley explained. “And while sustaining positive traffic, the real goal here is to make sure that it is sustainable and to be sustainable it needs to be profitable.”
In 2015, Red Robin will enhance the customer experience through a new partnership with Ziosk, which will bring the latter’s tabletop devices to Red Robin’s entire system in late 2015.
“Most of you are probably already familiar with Ziosk and we believe incorporating their tablets into our service model will further enhance and customize the Red Robin guest experience,” Carley said, “with the added convenience of paying at the table, the speed of service improvement, and the option for on table entertainment.”
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