Atmosphere reports increasing new business by 14 percent, and increasing repeat visits by 19 percent. 

One of the biggest takeaways during the first two years of the pandemic was that dining had changed forever, with off-premises sales remaining above pre-pandemic levels in early 2022. What those statistics may ignore, however, is how much Americans still love dining out at restaurants. 

In fact, according to the National Restaurant Association’s “State of the Industry 2022” report, 80 percent of adults said going out with family and friends is an essential usage of leisure time. The Association’s report also found that 68 percent of adults preferred spending money on going out to a restaurant than buying something from a store. 

In other words, the dine-in experience is far from dead. At the same time, because diners do have more options than ever before when it comes to choosing where and how they will eat, it’s become increasingly important for operators to create a top-notch in-person dining experience. 

And yet, creating that experience has become increasingly difficult. Whenever Mike Neri, senior vice president of distribution at Atmosphere, goes out to eat, he’s amazed at how often everyone is looking at their phones. As he points out, it’s hard to create a great experience in your restaurant when customers are staring at their phones the whole time. 

It’s why operators love Atmosphere—a free streaming service that offers 66 channels of  audio-optional content specifically designed to engage restaurant diners. In turn, that engagement drives more revenue for the restaurant: Atmosphere reports helping its restaurant customers increase new business by 14 percent and increase repeat business by 19 percent. 

“So many operators tell me that they can’t believe the engagement they get from customers,” Neri says. “I think we’ve all normalized, to a certain degree, what I like to call ‘head down disorder,’ where everybody sits down and immediately puts their nose in their phone. There’s no conversation, there’s no shared experience when that happens. Whereas Atmosphere provides really engaging content that drives conversation and has people laughing out loud and talking to one another—it gives people something they can share and love together.” 

The increase in business is a huge selling point for operators. The idea is that the customer who is on the fence about having one more drink will turn from a “maybe” to a “yes” with the help of Atmosphere. In fact, according to Neri, many operators report having an uptick in dessert sales after adding Atmosphere. 

“There was this guy who owns an independent restaurant in Washington,” Neri says. “Before the pandemic he stopped by our office and he just wanted to meet us and say, ‘Hey, I put in Atmosphere and the craziest thing happened. We had a huge increase in dessert sales!’ It’s because families with their kids were socializing and engaging through dinner and when the server came around to ask about dessert they thought, yeah, let’s keep a good thing going.” 

But what operators love most about Atmosphere is that it’s free. As cable bills balloon, Atmosphere TV has an ad-driven model that relies on restaurants streaming Atmosphere for 40 hours per month. A nice feature in that respect is that restaurants can showcase specials, LTOs, or enticing menu items during Atmosphere’s ad breaks, which are built to be just as captivating as the material that plays on channels like Chive TV, Red Bull TV, and the all-new TikTok channel. 

“Most restaurants, whether they are sports bars or not, pay for linear cable,” Neri says. “When sports are on, that works great. But most cable TV programming that isn’t sports is not made with the out-of-home experience in mind. That’s where we fit in. We’re helping restaurants build that incredible experience they are always seeking to create during commercial breaks and downtime.” 

For more information on engaging content from Atmosphere TV, visit the company’s website

By Charlie Pogacar

Sponsored Content