How These Top Restaurants Transformed Their Digital Signage: TV for Bars & Restaurants

June 11, 2019

In a world where customers are constantly tuned out, traditional digital signage and cable never seem to be enough. Customer engagement is increasingly important to the success of bars and restaurants, but said engagement is incredibly hard to come by. That’s why, when some of the biggest restaurants in America decide to try something new, it’s worth looking into.

Here’s what happened when three top restaurant brands took the leap and upgraded their in-venue engagement strategy with branded TV -- a hyper-customizable platform that takes the best of digital signage and cable to create an innovative experience designed to drive ROI for your bar or restaurant.


Wendy’s franchisees cut the cord on their TV service in favor of a branded platform that highlighted their restaurant’s signage and hyperlocal entertainment

When Wendy’s franchisee, Hamra Enterprises, was given the option to transition its in-restaurant entertainment away from traditional TV, the team gladly took the opportunity. The satellite service they were using often played competitor ads and irrelevant, or inappropriate, programming. Valerie Root, store systems and product manager for Hamra, shared with QSR Magazine her own experience of witnessing family unfriendly content appearing on the screen while diners watched.

The Hamra team chose to cut the cord and now use their televisions to run a fully branded platform with entertainment feeds that cater precisely to guest interests, allowing Wendy’s locations to match content to each market. Using branded TV, a Wendy’s in Chicago can view updates from the Cubs while a location in New England can tune into a Patriot’s game.

Best of all? The platform allows Wendy’s to display their own brand materials, instead of worrying about competitor ads targeting their diners.


Chick-Fil-A leverages the digital signage in their restaurant as community boards.

Chick-Fil-A is a brand built on its strong sense of community -- each store even hosts its own community chalkboard. However, for franchisees David Chen and Mallory Givens, the traditional board was expensive to update and difficult to maintain. They saw a world of possibilities in swapping the signage for a digital community board.

Using the new digital platform, the Chick-Fil-A locations found success in leveraging social interactivity and signage to build an information hub that customers looked to as a true celebration of the community. Guests use it as both a resource to stay up to date on promotions and a source of entertainment. The platform acts as a connection point for the brand and makes for a memorable experience. Said Mallory Givens, “It hits our 3 ‘Ps’: people, place, and product.”

Buffalo Wild Wings

Buffalo Wild Wings restaurants incorporate interactive digital signage that encourage the use of mobile phones to connect with the brand.

Buffalo Wild Wings is well known for its chicken wings, and for its nearly omnipresent TVs. Multiple franchisees saw this as an opportunity to go beyond traditional digital signage and do something truly unique.

Using a branded TV platform, these locations have mixed local entertainment feeds with custom digital signage that allows customers to interact with the screens using their phones. This strategy embraces consumer habits and lowers the barrier for desired behaviors by making them as intuitive as possible.

The wing franchisees have used this technology to drive sales of specific items, promote contests, and increase loyalty program sign-ups with overwhelming success. This is because allowing customers to use their phones encourages them to interact with the brand while it is top-of-mind. Plus, the deals and downloads they engage with during their meal also stays with them after they leave, all because its on their own personal device.

Impressed? You can revolutionize your TV and digital signage too. All 3 of these brands made their strategies a reality with screens powered by UPshow - the custom consumer engagement platform built to drive revenue from your TV screens and become your #1 marketing asset.

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