Restaurant guest surveys: good idea?
On my last night in Evanston, Gailor was feeling too punk to go anywhere much for dinner, so we ended up walking a couple of blocks to an upscale-casual chain called Bravo Cucina Italiana.
It was a good choice because she was wearing her pajamas, and rather than make her feel bad about it I decided to dress down accordingly. (Only a slight exaggeration.)
I tell you this to say it was amazing how nice the staff was to us anyway. ...
My theory is that it was due at least in part to the guest survey we were invited to take part in. It wasn't some card, but an invitation at the bottom of the check to visit an independent Web site -- and the promise that we would get $5 off our next meal if we signed on and completed the survey.
That's a nice little incentive, and I can't see a downside for the restaurant. Of course, it's an independent site, so the restaurants must have to pay; but it gets the customers back, it encourages the staff to be noticeably friendly and efficient, and the restaurant might actually learn something useful. (Gailor did the survey and said you refer to your server by name.)
Maybe other chains do this. Gailor had noticed that Cosi, another chain, issues invitations to participate (for $2 off the next meal) on a more random basis.
I wonder if independent restaurants would benefit, or whether it would just be too expensive. Of course, they could always do it on their own sites. It somehow seems like more of an incentive than, say, knowing you get 5 percent off your check on a certain day. You feel like you've earned a little reward.
(Photo courtesy of Bravo Web site)