The Food Delivery Boom

As tired hungover students in the late 90s, we shamelessly dreamed that somebody would bring a greasy fast food burger to our door so we didn’t have to get up and fetch one ourselves. Fast forward over 20 years, and our morning-after dreams have become a reality.  Food delivery services are more popular than ever, thanks in part to the restrictions of the global pandemic changing the way that we eat. 12% of UK adults order food service delivery at least once per week, peaking at 15% during the third lockdown period. More businesses are heading online and adding delivery options, presenting a new set of branding challenges.

Reimagining the dining experience

The food delivery boom has redefined the concept of dining. Traditionally, dining out involved a complete sensory experience, encompassing the ambience, service, and food presentation. But with the surge in food delivery, brands have had to rethink how to offer a comparable experience within the confines of a takeout container.

This transformation has led to a focus on packaging as a critical aspect of food branding. The packaging is no longer just a vessel for holding food; it’s an extension of the brand’s identity. Innovative packaging designs must not only maintain the temperature and integrity of the food but also create a unique unboxing experience that makes the customers feel like they’re embarking on a culinary adventure.

Additionally, food brands must be mindful of eco-friendly packaging as environmentally-conscious consumers actively seek sustainable options. This commitment to sustainable packaging has become an essential element of food branding, signalling a brand’s dedication to quality and environmental responsibility.

food packaging examples

Designing for the smallest screen

Food brands have had to adapt to the digital age by using logos, packaging, and promotional material that not only look appealing in person but also on tiny screens. Think about it: when you open your food delivery app, you’re presented with a visual buffet of choices. Each restaurant’s logo and food imagery compete for your attention; first impressions matter more than ever.

As a result, food branding has become more streamlined and visually striking. It’s all about making a statement in a crowded digital marketplace. Bright, enticing visuals, eye-catching logos, and carefully curated food photography are the order of the day. Brands must now draw you in through visuals alone, leaving a lasting impression before you even get a waft of freshly cooked french fries.

Dynamic data-driven marketing

In the digital age, data is king, and food delivery platforms are repositories of valuable customer data. Food brands have leveraged this treasure trove of information to personalise marketing strategies and refine their offerings. For example, if you have ordered a pepperoni pizza every Friday night for the last two months, don’t be surprised if your favourite food app shoots you a push message on Friday afternoon reminding you how much you deserve a cheesy treat.

One of the ways food branding has evolved is through personalised recommendations. By analysing a customer’s order history and preferences, brands can suggest dishes or promotions tailored to individual tastes, enhancing the customer experience and fostering brand loyalty.

Data-driven marketing is another aspect that has changed the game. Brands can now target specific demographics and locations with pinpoint accuracy. You can tailor your advertising efforts, ensuring your messages reach the right audience at the right time.

Restaurants that don’t exist

The food delivery boom has given birth to an intriguing phenomenon — virtual restaurants. These eateries exist solely in the digital realm, with no physical dining space. Virtual restaurants often share kitchens with existing restaurants, offering a separate menu under a different brand name, or are operated from industrial units.

This trend has allowed established food brands to diversify and tap into new markets without significant infrastructure investments. The lack of customer-facing premises has also dramatically lowered the cost of starting a new food business. It’s a prime example of how the food delivery revolution has expanded the horizons of food branding, blurring the lines between traditional and digital spaces.

How to Rebrand

Branding your food delivery business

If you’re just getting started in the realm of food delivery,  getting your branding right is crucial. We want your customers to break into a smile as soon as their delivery driver places your packaging in their hands. After all, we know they’ve been tracking that dinner with anticipation since it left your kitchen!

Talk to Toast about how to create food branding that delivers every time.

Do you need help with your branding?

If you would like to discuss your branding, logo or identity project, call us on 01295 266644 or complete the form.