TV chef and restauranteur, Simon Rimmer, is capitalising on the benefits of social media, with the introduction of Purple WiFi into his two Manchester restaurants, Greens and Earle. The WiFi solution will enable all customers to surf the net in his establishments, free of charge, while allowing his management to analyse visitor demographics and promote the restaurants to customers’ social networking friends and followers.

Purple WiFi meets all legal requirements while delivering rich analytical information about the customer base, including how often they come to the premises, how long they stay and other user stats. Visitors login to the WiFi using their unique Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn profiles which allows business managements teams to effectively segment their customer base and actively market each venue by targeting relevant promotional offers at the WiFi users. As customers mention where they are on their social media updates, additional Facebook users and Twitter followers will become aware of the restaurants and potentially visit themselves.

Commenting on the decision to install Purple WiFi at his two Manchester restaurants, Simon Rimmer said: “I wanted to provide free WiFi, as it’s something that customers tend to expect everywhere they go these days.  Using a social WiFi service like Purple WiFi means we can gain a bit more of an understanding around who is coming to each restaurant and how often, so we can engage with customers more effectively and give them information that’s actually relevant to them.”

Gavin Wheeldon, CEO at Purple WiFi, adds: “Consumers expect WiFi wherever they go but the business sharing the internet connection doesn’t gain anything in return and, in many cases, ends up with a slower, less secure internet connection for their own business needs. Businesses should benefit more from offering a WiFi service to customers and Purple WiFi allows them to gain an understanding of their consumer demographics, while building brand awareness through social networking.”

Additionally to providing the service to end users, the business itself is provided with a private channel so that commercially sensitive traffic is kept separate to the traffic of those socialising in the premises, using the free WiFi. All public WiFi users are also in an ‘isolated’ mode so they cannot see or connect any other devices attached to the WiFi service, thereby protecting any interception of data passing through the router that they should not be able to see.

Purple WiFi is also a member of the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), which filters content to limit the risk of users unintentionally accessing websites that contain abusive content. This demonstrates the company’s commitment to protecting customers from the types of content that the IWF is working so hard to remove from the internet.