RITA’S ITALIAN ICE SELECTS PUNCHH TO POWER SOCIAL LOYALTY FOR 625 OUTLETS
Nation’s largest Italian Ice concept will use social rewards to drive repeat customers and referrals
CUPERTINO, Calif.—August 21, 2012—Punchh, the first social loyalty platform designed exclusively for restaurants, today announced a system-wide partnership with Rita’s Italian Ice, the nation’s largest Italian Ice concept with more than 625 outlets in 19 states.
Punchh’s patent-pending technology will be integrated into Rita’s smart phone application and deployed at all Rita’s Italian Ice locations enabling customers to earn rewards for their purchases, write reviews and receive additional awards when they refer their friends. With Punchh, Rita’s Italian Ice will also have the tools to directly engage with its customers through personalized push notifications and email, as well as the ability to create targeted marketing campaigns to drive business.
“Rita’s Ice fans are loyal customers and now we can engage them with Punchh,” said Jonathan Fornaci, CEO of Rita’s Italian Ice. “We looked at lots of loyalty partners and selected Punchh for its flexible social loyalty platform that is important to a large chain like ours.”
“Jonathan’s leadership and his team’s use of innovative technologies has been a key driver of Rita’s bottom line,” said Jitendra Gupta, CEO of Punchh. “Rita’s Italian Ice will use the Punchh social loyalty platform to engage guests using mobile devices and drive word of mouth. This leads to a fantastic return on investment as measured by repeat customers and referrals. As we have with our other customers in hundreds of locations, we look forward to working with Rita’s to deliver great results.”
Because deploying Punchh does not require the purchase of hardware or software, Rita’s Italian Ice will launch their new rewards program before the end of 2012. Customers earn “punches” when they make a purchase, and will earn extra “punches” when they recommend Rita’s Italian Ice to their friends who purchase as well.
Rita’s Italian Ice will use Punchh to drive business by sending direct, personalized offers through push notifications. The new Rita’s mobile application will have a location-aware store finder feature and will incorporate many of Rita’s existing marketing programs such as Cool Alerts, Birthday Club and Ringtones.
Based on the belief that a one-size-fits-all approach to loyalty does not work, Punchh was designed for restaurants to engage customers. Restaurants can drive social dynamics with Punchh’s easy-to-use dashboard to define rewards, execute social campaigns and track results in real-time. Punchh operators own their customer data, which can be added to existing analytics and third-party marketing programs. Customers can communicate easily with restaurants as well as their friends. And, Punchh supports multiple approaches for validating customer purchases – POS integration, secure QR code, code-based validation, and credit card transactions – thus eliminating fraud.
Punchh is a social loyalty platform for restaurants that harnesses the power of customer word of mouth and referrals through social media to drive business and provide measurable, real–time results. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., and launched in 2010, Punchh is accessed by customers through an intuitive and fun smartphone application and is a powerful marketing platform for restaurants that allows businesses to directly engage and incentivize their customers. The Punchh platform incorporates best–of–breed mobile and social technologies including patent–pending social referral tracking algorithms, provides flexible validations technologies for operational efficiency and fraud prevention, and custom–built applications to ensure brand consistency. Growing rapidly, Punchh currently serves more than 900 locations including AJ Bombers, Baldino’s, Buckhorn Grill, Burger Life, Hungry Howie’s, Pacific Catch, Rita’s Italian Ice, and Tri Tip Grill. For more information, visit www.punchh.com.
About Rita’s Franchise Company
Rita’s Franchise Company, headquartered in Trevose, PA, is the largest Italian Ice concept in the nation, currently operating in 19 states with over 625 units. Rita’s presently has international locations in China, India and the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao) and is continuing to grow nationally and internationally through franchise opportunities. The popular chain offers a variety of frozen treats including its famous Italian Ice, made fresh daily with real fruit, available in over sixty flavors, Old Fashioned Frozen Custard, layered Gelati as well as its signature Misto® and Blendini® creations. With its motto: “Ice. Custard. Happiness.” Rita’s is dedicated to serving up a big dose of happiness with their freshly made, delicious, custom treats, in a fun–filled atmosphere.
Rita’s was named one of the Top 25 Franchise High Performers by the Wall Street Journal’s “Startup Journal” and Ranked #156 on Entrepreneur Magazine’s “Top 500 Franchise Rankings” for 2011. For more information about Rita’s please call 1–800–677–RITA or visit www.ritasice.com.