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We’re deep in the middle of a global pandemic. Coronavirus, or COVID-19, has changed almost every facet of life, the whole world round. For those essential businesses still allowed to be open, it’s vital to manage customer flow so that there are no crowds of people passing around the virus at your location.

Some businesses, like doctor’s offices and restaurants offering takeout, are used to the waiting area concept. This means as clients arrive, they check-in and then wait in a designated area until it’s their turn to be served. Other businesses like grocery stores and pharmacies, are used to…


Over the past few years, the restaurant industry has discovered the time and cost saving benefits of using NextME to manage waiting lists. Restaurant owners, staff, and diners alike have enjoyed the rewards of this incredibly easy to use tech solution for an age-old problem. But what if NextME could help other businesses and industries just as effectively?

With this idea in mind, we began working toward integration into a new and exciting industry: event production. This industry is becoming more and more important in the business world, and delivering a positive customer experience has never been more crucial.

Experiential Marketing

Trade…


Technology is everywhere, from the smartphones we carry with us to the advanced systems in our cars, to the tech in use at places of business large and small. And the restaurant industry is no exception.

From touchscreen food and beverage dispensers that offer diners more options and a serve yourself experience, to biodiesel converters that will convert your used fryer oil to fuel delivery trucks and catering vehicles, technology is improving the way we do business. And better yet, it’s improving the bottom line of an industry with infamously tight margins.

But how, exactly, is all of this progress…


Mother’s Day is known as one of the busiest day of the year for restaurants. And it’s right around the corner! You may be wondering how to handle the extra demand. Here are our best tips for creating a special day that your guests will remember fondly for years to come!

Staff Up

No matter how amazing your staff is, they do have their limits. Don’t try to run Mother’s Day as if it’s the same as any other holiday. Be sure to staff up with some of your best hosts, servers, bartenders, and kitchen staff. If at all possible, avoid scheduling…


So you’ve managed to land the position of host at one of the hottest eateries in town. Go you! We know you’re going to rock this position, but in case you could use some tips, we’ve got your back!

Whether this is your first hosting job, or you’ve been at this for years, it never hurts to review the basics and figure out where you might have room to improve. Here are the down and dirty details on what it takes to really shine as a host or hostess for a restaurant.

  1. Look the part. This one starts before you…

It’s a nightmare for any restaurateur: lots of empty tables on Valentines Day because of no-shows. The notoriously busy holiday, when everyone wants to wine and dine their sweetheart, is regarded as the second busiest day for the restaurant industry (falling just short of Mother’s Day). And no-show reservations cost big money.

But Valentines Day 2018 did not go so smoothly for several restaurants in Chicago. A rogue OpenTable employee had been using their rival, Reserve’s, reservations service to make hundreds of fake reservations at 45 restaurants across the city, culminating on Valentine’s Day. …


When it comes to marketing, there are a lot of mediums that stress the importance of relevant targeting, but few that actually get it right. One industry in the midst of a complete overhaul is the Restaurant industry. Challenged by the introduction of several new players in an already saturated market, restaurant owners, investors as well as brands looking to connect with restaurant patrons have been left wondering which way to turn.

After activating a hyper local expansion of the NextME app here in Chicago, we’ve been able to gain key insight into some of the questions that restaurant professionals…


The restaurant industry is highly saturated, and with whatever initiatives you start, it’s essential to keep them going and supported. Many businesses start programs and never maintain them long enough for anyone to reap the rewards. This means that instead of running a ton of programs all at once, try to focus on one or two with flawless execution.

  • If you’re doing a rewards program, set a time length and stick to it (if not indefinitely)
  • Make sure your rewards are worthwhile (if you’re not sure what that is, list a few options and run a survey). With that said…

Taste of Chicago, the nation’s premier outdoor food festival showcasing the diversity of Chicago’s dining community is currently taking over Grant Park (July 5–9). General admission is FREE, which means you will have access to Chicago’s best food, music, arts, and exciting events throughout the day. Whether this is your first time visiting the Taste of Chicago or not, you should at least know a few restaurants, food trucks, and artists that are performing this year.

A new year calls for new vendors. …


Running a restaurant and getting customers in the door is not easy. Even popular restaurants are seeing prospects flee towards the exit due to long wait times for a table. NextME’s digital waitlist for restaurant employees is significantly improving the customer’s experience at the front-of-house (F-O-H) and has helped restaurants increase customer retention during wait times. What’s the secret? Communication. By leveraging mobile technology, NextME makes it easy for restaurants to seamlessly connect and relay to diners their position in line. …

NextME

Taking on the Wait of the World ⏰

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