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Mobile video can boost QSR’s sales and outreach: report

Consumers who frequent quick service restaurants are often the same target groups who consume the largest amount of video on mobile, suggesting that many food and beverage brands are missing a crucial marketing opportunity if they are not leveraging video advertising to engage this audience, according to a report from BrightRoll.

Most of QSR chains’ customers consist of three main groups: millennials, mothers and Hispanics, meaning that marketers have an easily identifiable audience to target with mobile videos. Forty-five percent of these mobile-savvy consumers use their smartphones to stream video, and spend approximately 15 percent more time viewing digital video than their non-QSR dining counterparts.

“It’s clear from this report that QSR consumers are gravitating toward their mobile devices to watch video,” said Sable Mi, senior director of research strategic planning at BrightRoll, San Francisco, CA. “This presents a huge opportunity for QSR marketers to reach their audiences on the go, wherever they are.

“More specifically, while 96 percent of Americans eat fast food, young adults, moms and Hispanics are rapid-growing segments for QSR and all three are heavy mobile audience. Therefore, marketers who aren’t investing in mobile video are missing a huge opportunity to get in front of their target audiences.”

Targeting “fast foodies”
Marketers are at a severe disadvantage if they do not leverage mobile video to target these groups of consumers. Thirty-eight percent of young adults claim they rarely plan ahead for meals, leaving a wide opportunity for QSR brands to drive impulse purchases among these customers.

Meanwhile, 65 percent of mothers find convenience an important factor when deciding which purchases to make each day. Sixty-nine percent of Hispanics believe that restaurants are ideal locations to spend time with family.

If QSR chains roll out more mobile advertisements to these segments, it could ramp up sales and brand awareness among the primary target demographics.

BrightRoll’s report also displayed that consumers who visit QSRs on a monthly basis watch more digital video than the general population, suggesting that stationery ads may not be beneficial.

These “fast foodie” demographics are frequently consuming content on their mobile devices. With mobile spend accounting for only 16 percent of overall digital spend, marketers have a lot of catching up to do to bridge the gap.

“The rise of digital devices has created increasingly fragmented audiences, and as a result, marketers should explore the idea of cross-screen strategies to increase the effectiveness of their campaigns,” Ms. Mi said. “The key is to leverage data and understand when, where, why and how their prospective customers use each device and target them accordingly.

“It’s good to keep in mind that cross-screen targeting and measurement standards are still underway, so marketers should fully understand vendor capabilities before jumping into cross-screen.”

Power of video
BrightRoll’s research discovered that mobile video tends to have the most effective approach when used for branding purposes, and to increase consumer affinity and loyalty. Marketers should also tap programmatic advertising to further customize ads in real-time, by demographics, values and lifestyles.

Brands should also keep in mind complementary features to their mobile video ads, such as showcasing menu options in an engaging manner, sending mobile coupons and using location-based targeting to market to consumers in the vicinity of a bricks-and-mortar restaurant.

BrightRoll’s 2015 Agency Survey found that QSRs are beginning to allocate more funds to mobile, with a 43 percent uptick in digital video ad spend. However, the room for improvement and greater potential still exists.

By leveraging location-based data and targeting the segments that frequent QSRs most often, brands will likely see a surge in in-store traffic as well as sales, thanks to mobile video’s influence.

“The key takeaway from this study is that there is tremendous potential for QSR marketers to reach their target audience with mobile video,” Ms. Mi said. “While traditional media is still influential in delivering brand messages, the ever-evolving, programmatic digital video landscape will bring QSR advertising to new heights.”

Final Take
Alex Samuely is an editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York