The heavy saturation of the quick service restaurant (QSR) industry requires brands to be proactive and innovative when trying to attract customers. Mobile advertising is a key way to reach customers who frequently visit their locations. While many QSRs currently use geo-targeting to send mobile ads to potential customers in a designated range around a location, creating advertising that will resonate with the close to 90% of U.S. adults that have eaten at QSRs in the past month creates a challenge for brands. By identifying the key consumer group that will be receptive to mobile ads, QSR brands can then examine their lifestyle attributes and attitudes to create marketing campaigns to which potential customers will relate.
Frequent QSR visitors, adults who have visited a QSR four or more times in the past month, are smartphone savvy. Seventy-seven percent own a smartphone and they are 41% more likely than the average U.S. adult to have used their smartphone in at least 20 different ways over the past month. Thirty-five percent of this group say that they like to receive location-based coupons on their cell phones, making them 11% more likely than the average U.S. adult to do so. Nielsen Scarborough analyzed the 23% of U.S. adults that have eaten at a QSR four or more times in the past month and agree “I like to receive coupons on my cell phone that are based on my location” to see what types of advertising creative would most interest them.
Advertising pertaining to ethnicity and celebrity will resonate with the frequent QSR visitors who are receptive to receiving location-based coupons on their phones. Compared to the average QSR visitor, they are 20% more likely to say “I feel really good about seeing celebrities in the media that share my ethnic background” and 18% more likely to say “I am more connected to my ethnic heritage than my parents are.” From a demographic perspective, youth and diversity should play a key role in the creative aspect of the ad. This group is 49% more likely to be Gen Z, 38% more likely to be a Millennial, 32% more likely to be Hispanic, 28% more likely to be Black/African-American and 21% more likely to be Asian/other race. Therefore, creative featuring a youthful, ethnic celebrity eating a meal is more likely to resonate among the younger generations. Because this group is also 31% more likely to say they enjoy being the center of attention, an ad including a Gen Z or Millennial surrounded by friends at a table could also attract visitors to the location.
Advertising pertaining to work/life balance will also resonate with the frequent QSR visitors who are receptive to receiving location-based coupons on their phones. Compared to the average QSR visitor, they are 23% more likely to say “I strive to achieve a high social status,” 19% more likely to say “my goal is to make it to the top of my profession” and 15% more likely to say “juggling family and work demands are very stressful for me.” Seventy-two percent of this group are employed, with nearly half working white collar jobs and they are 54% more likely to plan to go back to school in the next year for a degree or certification. In addition to their professional lives, they have families at home with children of all ages, offering opportunity for higher ticket meals. Twenty-three percent have children under the age of five in their households, 24% have children between ages 5-11 and 24% have children between ages 12-17. Ads featuring a young professional eating a featured meal promotion or a Millennial mom or dad with their child eating at the restaurant while both are doing homework could hit home with this group.
Compared to overall QSR visitors, frequent visitors who are receptive to location-based ads on their phones are 43% more likely to think mobile advertising is informative and 33% more likely to think mobile advertising is entertaining. So it’s important to keep messaging light but still use characteristics to which prospective customers can relate. Successful brands will use creative advertising campaigns to demonstrate to customers that they understand them and that they are there to help with their busy lifestyles.
Source: Nielsen Scarborough USA+ 2015 Release 2 GfK/MRI Attitudinal Insights