Once you’ve entered the restaurant business—you’ll realize that marketing is as important as the items on your menu. You can have the most exquisite cuisine and the best décor possible, but unless people are willing to try out your food, there’s no way that you’ll make any profits.
That’s why it’s essential that you’re up to date on the latest restaurant marketing trends. There’s a reason they’re being used by every successful eatery—they bring you the right customers who are willing to invest in your food. Here are some of the most popular marketing techniques for running a restaurant successfully.
1. Social Media
As obvious as it may be—having a social media account for your restaurant is absolutely imperative—but that’s not where your marketing should end. Your social media account should be engaging, alluring, and giving your potential customers unique insights into what they can expect if they head over to your restaurant or place an order.
Social media is all about the way you portray your business. Hire a professional photographer to take appetising photos of the items in your menu. Be sure to post the images at a time when you’re likely to get the most interaction—and have an appealing, well-thought out caption as well.
Depending on your target audience, the social platform you use can vary. If your market research tells you that most of your customers are young adults, an Instagram account for your business should be considered. However, if you’re more ambitious, you definitely need to have a profile on Facebook as well.
Make sure that you interact with the people who comment on your posts. Nobody wants to visit a page where they are unlikely to get any response. The way your present yourself online plays a major role in how people view your business.
2. Online Reviews
It’s now more common than ever for your potential customers to sift through reviews before they decide on visiting your restaurant. Whether they ask friends or family—or check online reviews—they’re trying to get a clearer idea of the public’s impression of your business.
Whenever you come across a customer that is pleased with your food and appreciates your restaurant’s ambiance and hospitality, request them to put in a few good words for you online. You can do this by guiding them to your social media profile.
Getting good reviews from customers is about more than just delivering on food and ambiance. If there are any accidents or unfortunate circumstances, the way you handle the situation plays a role in the way a customer sees your business.
If you ever bring your customers the wrong order or run out of the item they requested, be sure to speak to them kindly and try to offer a complimentary dessert, if possible.
3. Bring Personality to Your Restaurant
Everyone loves a restaurant that has a touching backstory, friendly employees, and an environment that feels welcoming and pleasant. To give your restaurant a personal touch—share videos online of different activities your chefs carry out in the kitchen, such as a behind-the-scenes of how different items are made.
You can also focus on items that are the most popular amongst your customers to ensure that your video gets the maximum number of views. Getting to know the chefs and the people working to prepare their favourite dishes is a sure-fire way of feeling more bringing your customers closer to your restaurant.
4. Use SEO Techniques
Get in touch with a restaurant consultant who specializes in restaurant marketing. They’ll be able to give you an idea of what draws people to your restaurant—is it the ambiance, the proximity to their homes, or the special cuisine your serve?
You’ll also be recommended to start SEO marketing. When you mention your location, phone number, and speciality, people will have a much easier time tracking your restaurant down. For example, if someone searches up “pizza places in downtown London”, your restaurant should be among the first few suggestions—if you’ve used the right SEO strategies.
Be sure to include directions, nearby sights, and images of the outside of your restaurant—this way people will be more inclined to pay you a visit. Including a phone number and your opening and closing timings is important as well.
SEO techniques also include hashtags under your social media posts which increase the chances of getting traffic.
5. Push Messaging
Whenever there’s a new deal, a promotion, or a new item on the menu—you’re going to want your customers to know. Push messaging is an excellent way of conveying to your customers that something exciting is happening at your restaurant—without the added hassle of advertising online.
The best part about push messaging is that you’re more likely to get a response. This is because the customers who leave their contact information with you and sign up for updates are already part of your target audience. There’s a higher chance of them availing the discounts you’ve mentioned because they’re already interested in your food.
6. Create a Website
Having a website is an effective way of bringing your deals, menu items, marketing, and posts all under one roof. On a website, you can share blogs that generate traffic and increase your reach. You can have guest posts by influential customers, cooks, or the owner of the restaurant.
A website also has a space for frequently asked questions, restaurant locations, or even an option to place an order for delivery. With a functional website that works on both desktops and mobile phones, you’ll be able to cater to a wide range of interested customers.
Have a professional design an engaging website that tells the backstory of your restaurant, showcases all your employees, and depicts the atmosphere that your customers will encounter when they step inside your restaurant. A regularly updated website generates traffic and answers any questions that customers may have.
Running a restaurant successfully takes commitment and hard work. However, it’s safe to say that once you get your business up and running—you’ll be grateful of the time and energy you put into the marketing strategy.
Do you want to know more? Browse through our blogs to receive more trade secrets. You can also hire our restaurant consultants for professional assistance.