The landscape of the restaurant business strategies has been completely transformed with the introduction of digital marketing.
Restaurant owners no longer depend on the traditional word of mouth to market their restaurants.
Today, most restaurants take advantage of digital media and mobile technology.
Are you trying to differentiate your restaurant business by putting in place an effective marketing strategy?
Are you struggling to get your restaurant marketing on track?
If you are the owner of a small restaurant or a chain of restaurants, we have good news for you.
In this post, we would be highlighting delicious seasoning tips for your restaurant marketing using effective marketing strategies.
What is the need for marketing strategy in the restaurant business?
You must be thinking that hey! I have a great menu, right from top-notch exotic dark chocolate pancakes and scrambled eggs for a perfect lazy morning to fining dining for savouring taste buds and top it all mouth smacking delicious food. Why will I even need a marketing strategy?
Succeeding at a restaurant business does not always imply to cooking the most palatable of dishes. Due to fierce competition, about 60% of restaurant business fail. The true success of any restaurant business bears down on its marketing strategies.
Remember: The first step to successfully marketing your restaurant is to create an in-depth marketing plan that will help you define your brand.
Now that you know modern restaurant business needs to indulge in intense digital marketing, let’s quickly take a look at some creative marketing ideas that will help you to take your business to the next level.
1. Engage your Customers with Loyalty Programs
Restaurant loyalty programs come in many forms but the base of most loyalty programs is similar: The customer collects points and then redeems those points for free stuff. This creates motivation, enthusiasm and loyalty among your customers.
Here are a few things you can do to make the best use of your loyalty program –
Paper-based loyalty programs have the benefit of giving something physical to the customer to keep while a paperless loyalty program is much more flexible, allowing your customers to receive updates and offers over an email, or a mobile app.
A paperless loyalty program enables you to interact with the customer. A mobile app, in particular, allows customers to create a profile, track their rewards.
Integrating your mobile app with your customer recognition POS systems can help you adopt multiple customer engagement tools.
Level Up with Gamification
For huge multi-location restaurants, you have the option to take your loyalty program even a step further and implement gamification to increase customer loyalty and engagement. Gamification can be in the form of customized progress tracking, badges, surveys, and rewards.
2. Capture Your Customers with Local Advertisements
Local advertisement is a powerful tool to increase engagement, traffic and build your online presence. It is easy to create and run super-targeted, low-cost advertisements that can be optimized to deliver to the right customer. Here are a few ways to advertise a restaurant online:
Search ads are an effective way to deliver the right message to potential customers.
Whether anyone is looking for a romantic spot for date night or something to satisfy their sweet tooth, or somewhere they can grab a quick lunch, creating advertisement based on the keywords specific to your business will help you stand out among competitors in the search results.
Some online searchers try to find something on the go, therefore it becomes important to get their attention during these micro-moments since it increases the chance of you winning a customer or customers.
Mobile ads allow you to provide an exceptional experience for the customer by allowing them to make reservations, find a location etc.
Awareness campaigns include social media advertisements such as Facebook or Instagram ads that reach out to a bigger audience. It can include a photo of your restaurant and compelling ad copy.
An awareness campaign is a great way to create a healthy relationship with the community your restaurant is located in.
3. Optimize Your Business Listings
There are lots of platforms that customers use to search for restaurants. Most restaurant folks know about the players like Yelp and TripAdvisor, but Google My Business and Facebook can be very effective too.
Google My Business
Google My Business is created and powered by Google Search. It is the best type of listing when it comes to location and keyword relevance. GMB allows you to add a long description, provide an option for reviews, share the restaurant and food pictures, and even allow customers to share their own photos.
Google My Business also provides a number of other benefits, like enabling table reservations right from the listing.
It is becoming the leading business listing platform because of its just-in-time approach since it puts your business in front of potential customers when they search for it.
Facebook’s local business account also provides you with many important and unique features.
In addition to providing customers with all the information they need, Facebook offers direct communication with the customer through Messenger.
Facebook Messenger lets you use integrations to take things to the next level. Integration can come in the form of offering online ordering, booking a table directly, providing custom offers based on previous orders, and much more.
4. Go Social
We are in the era, where social media platforms bustle with several pictures of delicacies that make people spend some extra. If you wish to keep your business rolling in, then you have to take advantage of social media to promote your restaurant online. When it comes to food, Instagram is the King, Facebook is Queen and the rest are puns. Go social and strat posting top-notch food pictures and video clips.
5. Get a Website
Having a website for your restaurant business act as a central point for your restaurant’s marketing activities. If you want your restaurant to go big, then you have to get a professional website. A website opens up opportunities for a much larger market of consumers to find you.
Remember to keep these things in mind when building your website:
What kind of info do you want to communicate to your customers?
Include an FAQ section.
List any special events that will enhance the customer experience.
Include images of your best-looking, most unique meals.
Attach links to your social media accounts and review platforms.
Include information on booking.
6. Make it Easy for Customers to Recommend and Review You
Customers always want to talk about their experiences, both positive and negative to others. The easier the process is for leaving a review or posting on social media platforms, the more your business will receive recommendations and recognition.
A few tips on optimizing your business’s review process:
Add a CTA button on your website to direct users to your Google My Business page
Have a barcode on the dining table just in case the customers want to scan and go directly to your Google My Business account to leave the review.
Provide a unique hashtag to concentrate your online recommendations under one hashtag that way it will be easier to promote.
7. Bring The Contests On
Contests are definitely a great way to spread the word about your restaurant. Keep both offline and online contest. You can simply start a contest in your physical restaurant that customers can share online.
8. Engage with Food Bloggers And Influencers
One of the greatest restaurant marketing strategies today is leveraging yourself on the network of businesses. As a restaurant owner, you can leverage your business on the network of food bloggers and influencers by connecting with them and sharing content related to your restaurant.
Nexuses is a creative growth marketing agency, that helps companies scale up their business frugally by helping them acquire new clients, boost their brand and digital presence. At Nexuses we help companies unlock most promising customer acquisition channels and drive their ideal customers to their product or service at scale.