With the festive season coming up, and social distaencing measures still present in many countries, the interest in online food delivery continues to grow, as a way to fulfill the customer's need for eating out.  

Here, we'll introduce you to some digital platforms that you not have heard of or considered yet. With a little bit of creativity and an open mind to embrace one of these new online platforms, you can accelerate your business in this competitive food delivery market!  

These digital platforms will show you that it is not just your digital marketing and brand presence that will be elevated, but moreover ensure you cost efficient initiatives throughout busy periods, like the upcoming ones! 

We present to you three different digital platforms, which are all free to sign up to, and can be used either in unison or separately to increase your online marketing, food delivery and overall business performance! 

Twitch.tv

An important part of preserving a solid relationship with your guests is to communicate news and updates with speed. This means that having a strong social media presence is crucial for a digital brand presence. With more and more operators taking their business online, competition can become fierce. With the majority of businesses, already on social media, such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, you have to get creative and look for other alternative platforms, which your competition may have not considered before.

With live streaming becoming the new norm in everyday life in many sectors, ranging from education to corporate, the foodservice industry can take advantage of this technology, to showcase their customers an alternative viewpoint of their everyday operations. The live-streaming platform Twitch.tv, bought by Amazon in 2014, is home to a 14 million viewers per day! Although this live streaming platform is primarily known for showcasing video game-related content, it has grown in many other categories on its platform, ranging from arts and crafts to food and drink.

Two successful takeaway owners have taken advantage of Twitch, which helps their business in different ways daily. @brittsgatukok, a burger joint in Halmstad, Sweden, and @Nizaris777, a Middle Eastern-based food truck in Tokyo, Japan, are utilising the platforms live streaming capabilities to showcase the everyday operations from their takeaways to an online audience around the globe!

Viewers can ask questions related to the menu, the takeaway or anything else they have in mind, while not having to pay to watch the live stream. From home, viewers/customers can directly follow their order and engage with the kitchen staff (channel host/streamer) through the platform’s designated public live chat. This enhances the communication/relationship between operator and guest, that is currently lacking as a result of Corona-imposed restrictions.

But it is not just the communication and relationship-building aspect, that is being addressed through live streaming. Unlike other live streaming platforms, such as Instagram live, Twitch offers its viewers the option to financially tip the channel or offer a paid monthly subscription to a specific channel. With Twitch itself being free to sign up and offering an easy livestream setup through Twitch's website or smartphone application, you do not have to spend anything to get the ball rolling! 

You can enhance your communication, earn some extra money while operating and even get endorsements from other channels. Twitch is a free and cheap win-win solution, where your brand/name will be known to thousands of individuals globally but also locally!

Keys points to consider when using Twitch.tv

Keys points to consider when using Twitch.tv

  • Make sure your laptop or smartphone is good enough to livestream.
  • Find creative ways to advertise your channel to your local customers, perhaps consider printing off some flyers with your channel name (or link) and distribute them with your online orders.
  • Engage with your viewers and to find ways how the engagement can benefit your operations. Consider asking them questions what they like about the menu or what can be improved. Getting instant feedback from customers/viewers is definitely a game changer!
  • Create special discounts for your followers or paid monthly channel subscribers.
  • Use your channel to advertise your business in many different ways, including endorsements from other local channels/streamers.
  • Avoid DMCA problems. Avoid any licensed music to be played in the background.

Discord

When it comes to online deliveries, communication between your business and your delivery drivers is key!

Today, we are in luck with third-party apps, like TakeAway.com, Deliveroo and Uber Eats making online food delivery easy and accessible to everyone signed up to those platforms. However, as some of you might know some of these third-party ordering platforms are not always available in your country or town. Of course, these ordering platforms also take a cut or charge a premium fee for using their services, meaning that your expenses for food deliveries become even higher! 

Not everyone feels comfortable partnering up with a third-party delivery company. Some may choose to keep delivery operations in house, a good cost-effective option. But with this the problem arises, how do we maintain good communication with our delivery drivers?

A good, cheap and reliable option is Discord, a free instant messaging platform that also supports audio and video calls. Discord, which is also often used by other third-party delivery companies, enables real time communication between the operator and the delivery drivers. Through its dedicated text channels, operators can organize different aspects of delivery on one platform!

Keys points to consider when using Discord

Keys points to consider when using Discord

  • Make sure your laptop or smartphone is good enough to livestream.
  • Find creative ways to advertise your channel to your local customers, perhaps consider printing off some flyers with your channel name (or link) and distribute them with your online orders.
  • Engage with your viewers and to find ways how the engagement can benefit your operations. Consider asking them questions what they like about the menu or what can be improved? Getting instant feedback from customers/viewers is definitely a game changer!
  • Create special discounts for your followers or paid monthly channel subscribers.
  • Use your channel to advertise your business in many different ways, including endorsements from other local channels/streamers.
  • Avoid DMCA problems (simple Google will educate you on this). Avoid any licensed music to be played in the background.

WhatsApp Business App

Of course, it is still important to have a platform where you can advertise your products and services. Although this can also be done through Twitch, you should consider one dedicated platform purely for advertising their products/services. 
 
Facebook and Instagram are well known for achieving this, however, we know that more and more customers are looking for easier and alternative ways to purchase products. The instant messaging app WhatsApp, which has been around for some time now, enabled communication between iPhone and Android phones for some years now. However, the developers understood its significance for business purposes and therefore created a version of the app, catered towards small-large business owners! 
 
As a result, we now have the WhatsApp Busines App! This altered WhatsApp version allows you to personally connect with your guests and customers on a daily basis while highlighting your products/services and answering any questions directly throughout their purchasing experience.

Keys points to consider when using WhatsApp Business

Keys points to consider when using WhatsApp Business

  • Fill out all the relevant details in your business profile, so your customers know where and who you are.
  • Make use of so-called quick replies, to save time and serve your customers quickly.
  • Stay organized by utilizing the labels, so you can easily label anything you have in mind, for example, new or returning customers. 
  • Create automated messages, just in case things get hectic in the kitchen and you have no time to reply to your customers.