Rational embraces the power of online

Rational embraces the power of online

Rational’s online transformation helps the company broaden its support network.

Eye level customer relationships at industry trade fairs and nationwide cooking demonstrations are big parts of the Rational brand reputation. By rapidly adopting online processes for the company’s communications, including navigating around the pandemic restrictions, Rational has transformed its engagement model. This has been achieved by combining both physical and digital relationships, giving customers even more accessibility to the manufacturer.

As Adam Knights, Rational’s marketing director says:

“It quickly became clear that we could turn this sudden and unexpected challenge to our traditional mindset into opportunities to find new ways to engage with customers.”

This begun with the product launch of the iCombi Pro and iVario Pro cooking systems. Just weeks away from a planned live spectacle, lockdown restrictions forced Rational to launch the products to a wide-reaching audience using digital platforms. The positive response to the successful digital launch galvanised the marketing team, giving them the confidence to explore the power of online further.

Alongside a series of newly created videos introducing their cooking systems, Rational developed a series of interactive online webinars aimed at providing chefs from different sectors of the industry with specific and relevant information to their needs.

Adam continues:

“Naturally we couldn’t replicate the smell, taste, and experience of our live demonstrations, so we looked at what alternative benefits we could bring to this new Rational experience. One of the most valuable things for our customers is their time.”

With Rational holding events online, as opposed to on site, a greater number of people from the same workplace could attend without hindering their daily operation. Meanwhile their time commitment was reduced, since they didn’t have to travel, and as they were being presented with sector specific information, customers knew that the time spent would be relevant and valuable.

“Our goal was to be informative and supportive, whilst retaining efficiencies for the customer,” says Adam. “By going digital we were able to stream the new Rational experiences directly into their place of work or home, via their PCs, phones, or tablets. As a result, the number of digital event attendees this year to date has exceeded the total number that attended live events for the entirety of 2019.”

Continuing the company’s digital journey, Rational launched Expert Chef seminars. The first seminar in the series saw one of the UK’s most influential Indian chefs, Rehan Uddin of the Asian Restaurant Owners Network (ARON), showing how Rational’s cooking systems can replicate traditional Indian cooking techniques as well as allowing chefs the freedom to experiment with different methods. Following a particularly turbulent year for the foodservice and hospitality industry, Rational also launched regular seminars with expert panels discussing hot industry topics.

“As well as the expert panel knowledge, we get the live feedback and questions from attendees which helps bring these perspectives right up to date. “Being able to bring the industry together like this not only helps us to understand our customers’ needs but also, we hope, helps to inspire and encourage them.”

Having attended an online event, customers who would like to know more about Rational cooking systems have the opportunity to participate in a live demonstration, held in a local venue. This allows them to experience the Rational cooking systems first-hand, supported by a Rational professional chef.

Adam believes the potential for digital events is enormous.

“The new Rational experiences help us keep our finger on the pulse of what’s really happening in the industry. Rational has always been a chef’s company, so anything that helps us recognise the challenges and pressures chefs are facing is invaluable. The more we understand, the more we can help.”

To find out information about future events and to watch videos of past ones please visit www.rational-online.com

Rational’s new Live online events demonstrate all-day menus for Food to Go and Fresh to Go

Rational’s new Live online events demonstrate all-day menus for Food to Go and Fresh to Go

Rational has launched two new dedicated webinars, Food to Go and Fresh to Go Live online.

Food to Go Live online is targeted at convenience stores, in-store bakery, counter service and forecourts, with the event focusing on pre-prepared foods such as bread, pastries, porridge pots and wraps, showing how a huge variety of snacks and meals can be prepared in Rational’s iCombi Pro combi steamer. The Fresh to Go event looks at how operators such as butchers, delis and supermarkets can cook fresh food to go, such as roast joints, bread and bespoke ready meals, using both the iCombi Pro and the iVario Pro cooking systems.

During the online events a Rational chef demonstrates how Rational cooking systems can be used to either introduce a food to go service, or to expand an existing offer with snacks and meals throughout the day. They’ll cover breakfast, lunch and dinner, along with bread and all-day sweet and savoury snacks, and look at food delivery options. While the Rational chef gets busy cooking, an expert host is on hand to answer questions via the chat function.

Ross Crook, Rational corporate chef says:

“Food to Go has been a growing trend for many years, but the pandemic has driven it even harder, especially in terms of food delivery. These latest webinars show how the Rational cooking systems can prepare everything an operator needs for a complete food to go menu.”

A key consideration in many food to go outlets is that staff may not be trained cooks. The Live online shows how easy it is to prepare food in the Rational cooking systems, simply by following the touchscreen instructions. Since staff won’t have to monitor the food the appliances tell them when it’s cooked or when they need to take action – they can get on with other tasks such as serving customers.

During peak periods operators may be dealing with many different orders at once. The webinar covers the ability of the Rational cooking systems to cook lots of different foods simultaneously, speeding up production, saving time and reducing energy consumption. A key benefit here is that customers are happier as they don’t have to wait for long!

The Food to Go team at Rational is highly experienced. During the webinars they’ll demonstrate just how easy it is to introduce a Food to Go offer in store using Rational cooking systems, how they can enhance the existing customer offer, and how they can increase revenues.

The Live online events are free to attend and you can register at rational-online.com. To find out more, talk to your Rational representative or visit the Rational website.

RATIONAL is the leading provider in hot food preparation equipment and, with the iCombi Pro and the iVario multifunctional cooking system, the company delivers 95% of all conventional cooking applications. Rational’s ConnectedCooking allows operators to monitor, manage and update their Rational appliances remotely, from a PC, tablet or smartphone. iKitchen is the combination of the iCombi Pro, iVario Pro and ConnectedCooking – iKitchen delivers the best kitchen management and the best cooking solutions. For information and brochures, or to find out about free Rational Live online demonstrations, call +44 (0)1582 480388, freephone 0800 389 2944 or visit www.rational-online.com