Krystal Restaurants Deliver a Unique Customer Experience at its 50’s Style Drive-Up Restaurant
Founded in 1932, The Krystal Company is the oldest quick service restaurant chain in the Southeast and the second oldest chain in the United States. Enjoyed by three generations of Americans, Krystal is a cultural icon. By delivering great food, quality service and fair value for 70 years, the Krystal brand has assumed a prominent place in the Southeast.
Krystal Restaurants, the fast food icon famous for the fresh, hot, small, square hamburgers craved by millions throughout the Southeast wanted to enhance their customer’s dining experience.
The Krystal Restaurant located in Chattanooga, TN wanted to design their restaurant with a 50’s traditional theme of drive-in eating with cars selecting meal choices from a menu available at the car location. The meal would then be delivered to the car by “car hops” and the customer would typically relax in their car and eat their meal or take it out.
While Krystal wanted to maintain this “retro” look and feel they also wanted to enhance the customer dining experience and introduce efficiencies of modern fast food restaurants. Krystal contacted the Hammond Communications Group and strategic partner Schult Industries who designed a unique digital menu board experience for Krystal’s customers.
The Hammond Group, a Scala Certified Partner, created a solution that utilized a three-zone layout to narrowcast rich media (video, graphics and audio), a live TV signal and text crawl to multiple displays. Although the system included interior displays, it is the application for exterior signage that is truly unique.
Each car stall is equipped with a traditional backlit menu board with 32” LCD displays. Hammond customized the solution so that screen content is triggered upon the car’s arrival and departure and controlled by the customer who can elect to scroll through a menu, watch TV and more. Sensors in the parking stall detect when a car approaches triggering the digital menu board to activate the screen. The customer selects a meal of choice from the myriad of choices available on the digital menu board. The customer’s order is dynamically sent to the restaurant where the order is prepared in the kitchen and “car hops” deliver it directly to the customer’s car.
If the customer chooses to eat in the car, the digital menu board provides an entertainment option consisting of a live TV feed for the local Chattanooga area. Audio is piped into the car through a specific station on the car’s FM radio.
The installation of the digital menu boards with digital meal ordering and live television feed is integral to the overall image of the restaurant. The solution allows Krystal Restaurant to maintain their “retro” look and feel while upgrading the customer dining experience to a modern fast food restaurant delivery process.