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商业 - 科技

评米其林星不如当网红餐厅:餐饮企业竞相推出AI、AR菜单

Jay Samit 2018年05月20日

对于大多数食客来说,比起一家米其林星级餐厅,他们更喜欢去的是“网红餐厅”。

聚餐前对着美食先拍照发圈,已经成了很多人的日常。很多梦想当“网红餐厅”的老板纷纷抓住这一商机,在菜单中加入了“虚拟美食”功能,好让顾客将这些美美的照片晒到社交媒体上。

为了刺激销量,还有一些连锁快餐店采用了AR技术,以吸引年轻一代的顾客。这大概算是日本人发明的“サンプル”(即英语“Sample”的日文发音,也就是我们在日式拉面店的橱窗里常见的用塑料制成的美食样品)的21世纪版了。

食客们只要用手机对准菜单或者餐具垫,屏幕上就会显示出冒着滋滋热气的汉堡和披萨的照片,鲜美的奶酪令人食指大动,然后他们就可以将照片分享到Snap或Instagram等社交媒体上了。谷歌的Google Lens或者苹果的ARkit的用户甚至可以通过AR功能,在桌面上显示出虚拟的3D美食。

为了更好地通过社交媒体吸引潜在消费者,很多餐饮也在测试VR功能。80、90后的“千禧一代”既是最大的社交媒体用户群,也是最喜欢花钱到餐厅吃饭的一群人,自然也就成了餐饮业的主要目标。

据统计,美国网友每天在社交媒体上晒出的美食照片多达350万张。而吸引食客晒美食照片,既能为餐厅网站吸引流量,老板们也免去了在传统媒体上打广告的开销。Snap的用户足有3亿,Instagram的用户更是多达8亿,这些美食照片的潜在营销价值无疑是巨大的。

美食相关话题是Instagram上的第三大热门话题,“Food”一词更是Instagram上最火的话题标签。2016年餐饮用品网站sousvidetools.com的一项调查显示,“披萨”是Instagram最热门的词条,被分享了1970万次,其次是“寿司”(1340万次)和“鸡肉”(1190万次)。十大热词中还有“沙拉”(第四名)、“意面”(第五名)、“鸡蛋”(第八名)、“牛排”(第九名)等。

餐饮业对社交媒体的重视,也是消费者饮食习惯改变的体现。据美国投资银行Piper Jaffray估算,目前,美国的网购订餐(含移动应用、手机短信、在线订餐等方式)规模约合19亿美元。未来五年,美国餐饮业总销售额的四分之一将来自网购订单和外卖,订单量将比现在翻一番。

除了市值2000多亿美元的快餐行业,其他行业的企业也在向这一领域进军。在上周的年度I/O开发者大会上,谷歌的Google Assistant人工智能助手又展示了一个惊人功能——它已经可以自行给餐厅前台打电话替主人订餐了。不过让人工智能机器人给真人打电话这事儿毕竟有点令人毛骨悚然,很多人表示无法接受。对此谷歌表示,此功能正式推出后,该聊天机器人在打电话给餐厅时将自报家门,特别说明自己是主人的机器人。

与此同时,很多餐厅也在试图将AR与AI技术结合起来,以进一步提高食客的就餐体验。

比如美国有一家名叫“小熊汉堡”(Bearburger)的快餐店,在全美拥有44家连锁餐厅,它打造了一只“说话熊”,用户在手机上下载Bareburger Rewards应用后,只需扫描食品包装上的二维码,与“说话熊”互动,就可获得积分和免费食品。这只“说话熊”会告诉你今天有什么特价产品,食材的来源是哪里,以及公司最近采用了什么新的环保政策。

小熊汉堡公司则可以通过与用户的互动数据,分析它获得了多少次免费宣传,以及这项技术对产品总体销量的影响。小熊汉堡的营销总监纳比尔·阿拉曼表示,这项技术的确提高了部分门店的销量。

随着越来越多的餐厅推出AI菜单,消费者只要通过手机,就能查询到餐厅的折扣价格、优惠时段,以及有哪些“秘制美食”。同时这些技术也令食客心情愉悦,这一点也是很重要的,因为现在顾客的满意度早已不仅仅取决于食物本身了。

拉面道(wagamama)是由一名香港企业家在英国创办的日式拉面店,目前已经开张了140余家门店。它也是第一批采用了AR应用的餐厅之一,顾客在等待上菜的过程中,可以在餐具垫上玩玩AR小游戏,看看歌手们在音乐节上的表演,或者投票评选自己喜欢的美食。另外,据说现在有41%的孩子会在餐厅里玩平板电脑,那么离“虚拟蜡笔”功能走进餐厅还会远吗?

社交媒体将把每一顿饭都变成移动的盛宴。对于大多数食客来说,比起一家米其林星级餐厅,他们更喜欢去的是“网红餐厅”。认识到这一趋势的餐饮企业正在迅速发力,拓展自己的“科技菜单”,希望AI和AR技术能成为令他们变身“网红”的新配方。(财富中文网)

本文作者Jay Samit是一名连续创新人,也是畅销书《颠覆你自己》(Disrupt You!)的作者。

译者:朴成奎

Restaurants wanting to cash in on people increasingly sharing food photos are spicing up their menus with virtual cuisine that patrons can post across social media.

To lift sales, fast food chains are turning to augmented reality to attract a new generation of customers. It’s a 21st century version of Sampuru, the Japanese custom of showcasing plastic food replica in restaurant windows.

Diners simply point their smartphones at a menu or placemat, and sizzling hamburgers and pizza slices dripping with cheese appear on screen that they can then share on Snap or Instagram. Customers who use apps like Google Lens or Apple’s ARkit can even appear to place 3-D virtual meals on their tables.

Restaurants are testing virtual reality as the way to better connect with potential consumers through social media by giving them something to dish about. And millennials, a prime social media-using demographic that also happens to spend the greatest percentage of their food budget on eating out, are the prime target.

Getting the public to share food images on social media—they post 3.5 million food images daily—drives traffic to restaurant websites and reduces the need for restaurant owners to buy ads in traditional media. With 300 million Snap users and 800 million Instagram users, the potential audience is huge.

Food related hashtags are the third most popular category on Instagram with the basic #food being the most popular descriptor. According to a study in 2016 by catering supply website sousvidetools.com, pizza was the top entrée on the service with 19.7 million images shared, following by sushi (13.4 million) and chicken (11.9 million). The rest of the top 10 included salads (#4), and pasta (#5) along with eggs (#8) and steak (#9).

The focus by restaurants on social media is also a product of consumers’ changing eating habits. Investment bank Piper Jaffray projects that one quarter of all U.S. restaurant sales will shift to digital ordering and delivery over the next five years, a doubling from today’s 1.9 billion orders through mobile apps, text messages, and online.

With over $200 billion at stake, fast food isn’t the only sector going virtual. At its annual I/O developer conference last week, Google showed how its digital assistant, Google Assistant, would be able to make dinner reservations for users by tapping artificial intelligence to call and chat with any restaurant’s human host or hostess. After an unanticipated public backlash of having an AI bot calling humans, Google said that when the feature rolls out the chat bot will identify itself when calling.

Restaurants are also starting to combine augmented reality with artificial intelligence to enhance the experience of dining in restaurants.

Bareburger, a chain with 44 locations, has an augmented reality spokesbear. Launched from a QR code on packaging, customers with the Bareburger Rewards app can earn points and get free food by interacting with it. The bear tells patrons about daily specials, talks about the sourcing of its food, and explains the restaurant’s new environmentally-friendly policies.

Bareburger can then analyze the data from its virtual maître d’s interactions to figure out how much free publicity it received and the impact of the technology on overall sales. Nabeel Alamgir, the chain’s chief marketing officer, says the technology has increased same store sales.

As more restaurants roll out AI-enabled menus, consumers will be able to check their phones for discounts, happy hours, and secret menu items. The technology also helps keep diners entertained, an important point considering that customer satisfaction depends on more than just good food.

Wagamama, a U.K. ramen chain with 140 locations, had one of the first restaurant AR apps designed to interact with placemats to give customers something to do while waiting for their orders. Diners can do things like watch musicians perform at music festivals and vote for their favorite dishes. With 41% of children using tablets to entertain themselves at restaurants, can virtual crayons be far behind?

Social media is turning every meal into a moveable feast where being a mobile star is more important than a Michelin star to most patrons. Recognizing this trend, the restaurant industry is expanding its technology menu and hoping that artificial intelligence and augmented reality are the ingredients for a savory success.

Jay Samit is a serial entrepreneur and author of the bestselling book “Disrupt You!”

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