From Copy to Cocktails: 10 Ways ChatGPT Saves Restaurants Time & Money
Unless you’ve been avoiding the internet over the last few months (no judgment), you’ve likely heard of ChatGPT. This new AI chat tool that’s taken the world by storm already has over 100 million active monthly users and growing.
From composing music and writing novels to passing the bar exam, there’s no limit to how businesses and consumers benefit from ChatGPT — and that got us thinking: What can ChatGPT do for the hospitality industry?
For the restaurant marketer looking for social media inspiration to a bartender that’s exploring new drink recipes, the possibilities are endless. In this article, we’ll highlight 10 ideas and examples you can start testing out today.
We asked ChatGPT, and in its own words, it described itself as “a computer program that can talk to you like a human. It can understand what you’re saying and respond in a way that makes sense. It can also do things like translate languages, create content, and find information. It’s like having a smart, helpful friend you can talk to anytime!”
ChatGPT, released by OpenAI in late 2022, is not the first AI chat tool to hit the market. Jasper AI made waves across the business world when it launched two years ago. Built for copywriters and content marketers, Jasper’s language model is designed to produce marketing copy. ChatGPT, however, was built to generate content for a wider range of topics and purposes.
ChatGPT is currently free for limited use while it’s still in the learning phase. There is also a paid version for $20 per month, which gives you access during peak times, faster responses and a first look at new features.
Test it Out For Yourself! ✍️
To test out ChatGPT, simply create a profile using an email or Google account. Once you log in, you can start asking questions in the chatbox. ChatGPT will respond to you in a matter of seconds, but the beauty of this technology is that it can change or append answers to your initial question, like a conversation. Below is an example.
10 Ways Restaurants Can Use ChatGPT
There is one thing restaurant professionals seem never to have enough of — time. And as we all know, time is money. In mere minutes, ChatGPT can provide inspiration and ideas to help you level up your business and brand for free. Below we’ll explore exactly how you can use ChatGPT for restaurants.
Pro Tip: Technology advancements aside, you’ll always know your brand better than a robot, and it’s important to remember that our recommendations are meant to be used as a starting point. Use ChatGPT, or any AI language tool, as a method to source ideas and create a first rough draft. After brainstorming is complete, let the humans take over the editing and final touches.
Even the most seasoned marketers need a little inspiration once in a while, but for restaurants that don’t have a dedicated marketing person, ChatGPT can be a game changer.
1. Website Copy and Landing Pages
Building a website from scratch, or even maintaining one, takes time and resources many operators don’t have.
Because ChatGPT is fueled by massive amounts of data from across the internet, chances are, they know a few things about your business if it exists online. You can ask ChatGPT to create customized website landing page copy, headlines, urls and even optimize pages for search engine optimization (SEO).
Check out ChatGPT’s response when we asked it to write an “about us” page for SevenRooms.
The description above is accurate, but it skipped over SevenRooms’ main value point: our restaurant CRM. So, we asked it to optimize the same page for the keyword “restaurant crm.”
ChatGPT basically nailed the description and mission of SevenRooms in a matter of seconds without us having to provide any additional information. The results are a good starting point — though we’d likely have one of our human marketers trim this down for better clarity.
Did You Know? In addition to ChatGPT, OpenAI also created Dall-E, an AI visualization tool that creates images and art based on prompts. Now AI can help you create both images and content!
2. Copy Translation and Localization
If you cater to customers in different countries, translation adds a layer of complexity and cost. ChatGPT can quickly translate text into a variety of languages in one sitting. We asked it to translate English copy into Spanish, French and German, and it generated all three versions within minutes.
Aside from language translation, ChatGPT can also help you regionalize messaging. Localizing your content within different markets builds trust with customers. For example, “takeout” in North America is referred to as “takeaway” in England. ChatGPT can easily identify these localized nuances for you. Below is an example.
3. Email Generation and Testing
How many emails does your team send in a day? Whether for a marketing campaign, a response to a customer email or a company-wide announcement, ChatGPT can help you draft copy or provide inspiration to work with.
You can also iterate on email performance by using the tool to A/B test different versions. If you already have content for an email but want to create other titles, subject lines or CTAs, you can put your existing copy into ChatGPT and ask it to generate new versions to test.
In this demonstration example, we asked ChatGPT to draft a response to a customer email.
4. Social Media Strategies and Tactics
Aside from harvesting a wealth of social media post ideas and inspiration, ChatGPT can help you strategize. Given the right inputs, it can build a social media marketing plan for your restaurant and suggest new tactics and tools to try.
Whether negative or positive, ChatGPT can help you respond to customer reviews. Add the review to the message box and ask ChatGPT to respond.
7. Virtual Assistance
For restaurants that want to take ChatGPT to the next level, it can be integrated with a restaurant’s website through a chatbox or messaging widget. Think of it as your very own automated virtual assistant you can leverage to outsource tasks like providing answers to customer FAQs and reservation availability, suggesting menu items and even processing online orders.
For operators short on staff, this can free up the need for an additional host or maître d‘ by allowing them to focus on greeting diners and seating tables rather than fielding calls all day.
HR and Staffing
8. Hiring and Training
ChatGPT can help you write job descriptions and onboarding documents and even inspire interview questions to ask!
A recent article posted by Food & Wine featured how Axelrad bar in Houston, Texas released a new cocktail menu completely generated by ChatGPT. The venue decided it would be fun to pit their bartenders’ skills against AI in a competition. The bartenders created a menu of their own signature cocktails alongside a menu of AI-generated libations. Then, customers voted on their favorites. Who do you think won?
FYI: While you don’t have to go all out like Axelrad bar, you can use ChatGPT to suggest new cocktail and dish recipes. As you get more comfortable with the tool, consider advertising how it is contributing to your menu — this could be a fun way to engage your customers and spark marketing ideas that your team’s creative juices flowing.
Looking for a little menu inspiration for Mother’s Day or Christmas? Ask ChatGPT! If you like what ChatGPT returns, you can ask it to give you the specific recipe for any of the recommended dishes.
What ChatGPT Means for the Future of Hospitality
We’ve just covered 10 ways ChatGPT can help your business, but it’s only the beginning of the tool’s potential. AI technology is here to stay and will continue to get smarter.
While some fear the impact automation will have on the industry and future jobs, one thing is for certain — the human touch required for hospitality cannot be automated. Instead, AI will allow operators to focus more on the guest experience by eliminating repetitive tasks and improving efficiencies.
Michael Twiford, SevenRooms’ Director of Product who is leading the charge for SevenRooms’ integration with AI shared, “For restaurants, personalization is key, and until now, true personalization at scale wasn’t possible due to the time commitment required. AI will significantly reduce the effort it takes to provide personalized hospitality while allowing operators to maintain their high standards every step of the way.”
So what are you waiting for? Dive into ChatGPT today and explore the different ways it can save your business both time and money.