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KFC shares special recipe for digital growth at SXSW

KFCDistinctively KFCKFCApril 14, 2023
KFC shares special recipe for digital growth at SXSW

Last month, KFC Global VP of Digital Strategy and Product Akhil Anumolu and Sr. Director of Digital Experience Ashley Travis attended South By Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, TX. Starting out as a music festival 35 years ago, SXSW is now an annual week-long conference and festival gathering creatives from across the globe and offering innovative learning tracks including XR and Metaverse, Brand and Advertising, Game Industry, Climate Change, Workplace Revolution and Design.

So, what was our Finger Lickin’ Good fried chicken doing there? 

KFC has set an ambitious goal to become 100% digital by 2025 and is making big investments in technology to reach that goal. As part of the Brand Innovators experience at SXSW, Akhil and Ashley sat down with boundary-pushers and visionaries to share how marketing and technology work together to elevate the customer experience and grow our business.

On stage at the Brand Innovators Marketing Leadership Summit, Akhil shared one way we’re investing in technology is to ease the friction for our team members working in the kitchens of our restaurants. Whether it’s an all-in-one app for restaurant GMs or robotic kitchen assistants to help with cooking and food prepping, we’re focused on making sure that working for KFC is as simple and fun as possible.

Secondly, Ashley shared how important it is for KFC to meet customers’ expectations, ensuring they can order Finger Lickin’ Good fried chicken when, where and how they want it. This means a robust digital channel that includes kiosks for seamless ordering in-restaurant, take-away orders that are digitized, strong partnerships with marketplace aggregators, as well as a digital-first drive-thru experience.  

And together, Akhil and Ashley emphasized that in order to build technology solutions that are highly useful to employees and customers, it’s essential that KFC’s digital and marketing teams are integrated. Part of KFC’s growth strategy is to revolutionize our data and technology while building high-value products at scale, and that holistic vision requires deep collaboration across multiple teams and functions. 

To get the inside track from SXSW, you can watch Akhil and Ashley’s full discussion here:

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