Do you know how every restaurant & pub has a website that no consumer visits. It's only frequented by vendors, partners, franchise seekers etc, which by itself is a good enough reason to have a website today.
But, when websites were still new, every F&B venue thought they needed to do something with their website to get consumers on it. They spent tons of time and money on website developers to get work done. Some even went to the extent of developing virtual games like "Who can drink the maximum beers".
All that changed eventually, everyone realised that thing called "location, location, location" is actually applicable everywhere.
You go where consumers are - and consumers are on platforms that they use frequently like facebook for example and facebook pages became clearly a better way out. Well that was a lesson well learnt then.
But as they say history repeats itself, today when we meet F&B owners to jump on our mobile app clubd, many talk about developing their own apps, which includes their own loyalty platforms, seamlessly integrated with their Point of Sale Software and sometimes done by a vendor for FREE.
I am not sure how any of these seem like trivial problems to them. Developing an app, developing a loyalty solution, integrating with POS software are all stand alone difficult problems to solve. And once you do that, you have to get consumers to download your app, and keep them engaged for long periods of time so your app stays on their phone.
Seems like a lot of difficult problems for a business whose core is to serve great food and drinks - which I am sure, is difficult enough to achieve consistently.
So my guess is this is yet another exercise in futility, consumers will still use the apps that they regularly use, and you have to catch them while on it. For the F&B industry that includes Facebook, Foursquare, Zomato, Trip Advisor and hopefully many startups like us who are gaining traction.
The answer definitely isn't in developing your own app. People who do nothing but build and market apps get it wrong, what chance does the poor neighbourhood pub have.