Denny’s transforms customer engagement

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
Dan Berthiaume profile picture
Denny’s is focusing on innovative ways to drive customer loyalty.

Denny’s is cooking up new tech-based customer engagement initiatives designed to create and maintain loyalty.

The casual dining chain is deploying the Sparkfly Offer & Reward Management Platform and Olo SaaS-based Marketing and Guest Data Platform (GDP) modules to develop and implement an intelligent customer engagement platform. Solutions being implemented include POS middleware, digital wallet, and CRM applications.

By leveraging intelligent, data-driven marketing technology, Denny’s hopes to utilize real-time insights to drive a frictionless and digital-first customer experience, making it easier for customers to earn rewards and receive personalized offers. The new customer engagement ecosystem is now live across all 1,600-plus Denny’s locations.

"Personalized experiences are key to building and nurturing lasting relationships with our Denny’s guests," said Luis Martinez, Denny’s senior director of brand intelligence and customer relationship management. "For 70 years, we have forged meaningful connections with our customers that go beyond their restaurant visits. By teaming up with Sparkfly and Olo, we will continue to provide our guests with a rewarding experience that will keep them coming back for years to come."

"We are excited to leverage our partnership with Sparkfly to further support Denny's rapid digital growth and journey toward a truly intelligent, guest-centric future,” said Diego Panama, chief revenue officer at Olo. “By customizing their marketing initiatives and promotions to cater to each guest's unique needs, tastes and behaviors, Denny's will improve the impact of their campaigns, enhance guest engagement and drive company-wide performance. This partnership is a great example of the power of an open platform, allowing Denny’s to select Sparkfly as partner to integrate with its new and existing Olo solutions.”

"In times of economic uncertainty, it is paramount that businesses prioritize customer loyalty and recognize it as a key growth driver,” said Catherine Tabor, founder and CEO of Sparkfly. “By leveraging advanced technology to deliver personalized rewards and engagement programs, companies like Denny's can deepen customer relationships and create more meaningful and lasting connections. A customer-first approach is essential for success in any market condition."

Denny’s overhauls kitchens, offers augmented reality menu feature

In addition to its new customer engagement program, Denny’s is investing more than $25 million to upgrade and improve its kitchen equipment as part of an omnichannel brand refresh called "It's Diner Time."  The effort is designed to drive the development of new and improved food offerings, while increasing efficiency and reducing food waste. 

Denny’s is also introducing a new menu, which in addition to a number of new dishes also features a custom augmented reality (AR) experience. Customers can activate the AR functionality by scanning the menu with a smartphone, enabling them to take a virtual, interactive tour of each page. The AR experience includes access to exclusive deals and opportunities to learn about Denny’s and its 70-year history.