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Industry News -March 11th 2011



Bar Trivia Participants Spend More, Says Hooters of Costa Mesa, Calif

Hooters of Costa Mesa, Calif. is leveraging NTN Buzztime, Inc.’s Hosted Trivia to more effectively run its Tuesday trivia nights. Buzztime replaces Hooter’s old "paper-and-pen" method, and delivers the questions and results tracking on screen. "Easy to use, Buzztime Live Trivia is refreshingly modern and operates much smoother than our previous live trivia event," says Laura Acton, manager, Hooters of Costa Mesa.
Hosted Trivia, a subscription-based platform, is part of Buzztime's portfolio of trivia and entertainment products and is available to all Buzztime customers in the company's network of bars and restaurants. With this new product, trivia hosts and emcees focus on the fun and enjoyment of the crowd, while leaving the work to Buzztime. Game action and pace is controlled through rounds of 30- and 60- question Buzztime Trivia games created specifically for "live" environments and crowds. Hosts will no longer have to read questions to the participants and then reveal the answers all at once; Buzztime Hosted Trivia displays the questions and answers throughout the game on the establishment's television screens, thus freeing up hosts to engage with players.
To ensure that guests stay in their seats during their weekly, two hour live trivia events, Hooters of Costa Mesa requires that participants have to play until the end of the game. This strategy gets them to stay at Hooters longer and order more food and drinks. "Guests who play Buzztime Hosted Trivia spend nearly $5 more, increasing our check averages by $20 as most players compete in groups of four or more," says Action.

Copper Cellar Turns to Tokenization, Payment Gateway for Data Security

The Copper Cellar Corporation, which owns and operates 19 Copper Cellar, Calhoun's, Smoky Mountain Brewery, Cherokee Grill and Chesapeake's restaurants, recently installed TransactionVault, Merchant Link's tokenization solution, and the Merchant Link Payment Gateway across all of their locations in Knoxville, Nashville, Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Maryville and Lenoir City.
The company chose to utilize these solutions to safeguard customers’ sensitive payment data and remove it from the premise to ensure that it is transmitted safely and effectively, while reducing their PCI DSS compliance footprint.
"It's comforting to not have to worry about the security of our guests' credit card information," says Mike Gaston, vice president of information services for Copper Cellar Corporation. "The fact that it is not stored anywhere on our network is a huge relief."
The Merchant Link Payment Gateway sends payments quickly, while detecting and correcting errors along the way. It ensures funds are delivered accurately and consistently, prevents expensive chargeback fees and reduces clerk or system errors and prevents them from showing up on customer credit statements. TransactionVault removes customer credit card data at the point of sale where it would be at risk from hackers. The data is instead stored in Merchant Link's hosted "vault," effectively securing "data at rest" and reducing the cost and effort of attaining and maintaining PCI compliance.
Double posted batches eliminated
The Copper Cellar Corporation utilizes a Squirrel point-of-sale (POS) system for customer payments. Their previous payment processor and data security solution created problems for them by posting batches twice. Merchant Link's full suite of reporting and error detection tools help to eliminate failed batch attempts, duplicate batches or no settlement attempts.
"Our old processor had double posted batches before," said Gaston. "Despite not being directly responsible for the error, it made us look bad in the eyes of our guests. Merchant Link monitors for potential batch issues and ensures that problems such as these are a thing of the past for Copper Cellar, its restaurants and its customers."
The wide-scale implementation was completed shortly after a pilot site went live successfully with Merchant Link's solutions.

Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood Latest to Jump on Smartphone App Bandwagon

The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida has teamed up with MacroView Labs to develop mobile applications for the iPhone, Android, BlackBerry and other smartphones, that will serve as a mobile concierge, area tour guide, casino handbook, and social media hub - all rolled into one. 
“Our new mobile applications are a fun and easy way for our guests and customers to explore all that the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood has to offer - right from their mobile device,” says Jeanine Repa, senior vice president of brand marketing for Seminole Gaming. “Whether they are already at the Seminole Hard Rock, or if they’re planning a visit, our mobile apps offer users from virtually anywhere, and at any time, the ability to access the information that they need for their stay.”
An innovative and unique feature for the South Florida market is the Quick Response (QR) code. QR codes allow mobile users to snap a picture of the code using their phone’s camera, and using a QR code reader, can be automatically redirected to a website, receive additional information, connect to a wireless network, and other functions. The Android operating system has a built-in QR code scanner called ZXing on many models, and the iPhone Apple iOS operating system offers many free QR code reader apps.
Sample application features include:
  • Shows, attractions and amenities: Check out Hard Rock Live listings to grab tickets to world-class shows. Browse through top shopping, reserve some pampering time at the Spa, or view memorabilia featuring old and new music
  • Rooms and suites: Set the stage for unsurpassed rock star indulgence!  Preview the guest rooms then book a stay using special offers and packages
  • The casino: Review the rules to different games, register for poker tournaments, and get your game on.  
  • Restaurants, clubs and lounges: Want to check out a menu or make a reservation at one of our restaurants? Curious to see what celebs and DJs are appearing at Seminole Paradise nightclubs? It’s all here.  
  • Maps: Use detailed property maps to navigate the resort or access overhead custom GPS maps of the casino, hotel, and the surrounding area. You can even drop a pin onto the satellite map to remember where you parked.  
  • In-app search: Use the embedded smart-search bar to find content by keyword.  
  • My Hard Rock: Whether you want to bookmark information about our attractions or remember the number to the business center, you can save any page to create your own itinerary.  
  • Meetings: Event attendees can see private, passkey-protected content only accessible to registered guests. They can access up-to-the-minute event schedules, programs and materials, speaker bios, break-out room agendas, convention maps and more.  
  • Order room service – anywhere: Experience rock star treatment firsthand! Order room service when you’re still in the cab, playing blackjack or swimming. We’ll bring it to your room so that it’s ready when you are.  
  • Full-service directory: Need to contact the box office? The front desk? The Rock Shop? Get connected, instantly. 
  • Offline mode: Lost cell tower and WiFi access? No problem. The app will automatically go into offline mode so that you can continue to browse certain content and features until your connectivity resumes.  
  • Feedback surveys: Let your voice be heard – comment about the app and your experience at Hard Rock, or rate any of the featured services. 
  • Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and tell-a-friend integration: Stay in touch and update the world right from the app.
Additionally, in the future, guests will be able to link to videos, discounts and additional property advertisements.

UK Domino's Customers Pay for Pizza with PayPal

Domino’s is making ordering a pizza online even quicker and easier by linking up with PayPal. Following customer feedback, Domino’s has launched PayPal as its newest payment method for pizza. Customers in the UK simply need to log in to their PayPal account once they’ve placed their pizza order, enabling them to pay just by entering their e-mail address and password. PayPal is free to use on all Domino’s orders.

“Online orders account for an increasingly large proportion of our sales and as part of this, we are continually looking for ways to improve the process and make it even more user-friendly,” says Simon Wallis, sales and marketing director for Domino’s. “Our customers and Facebook fans told us they wanted an easier way to pay – we listened to them and we’re now pleased to introduce PayPal, which is fast, safe and secure. It’s great to be able to offer our customers the option of using PayPal to pay for pizza in just a couple of clicks.”

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