How To Market A Restaurant: 25 Top Tips
In a highly competitive industry, knowing how to market your restaurant puts you ahead of your competitors. We round up some of this year’s best restaurant marketing strategies and tactics that will give your business significant competitive advantage and opportunities:
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1. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly
There is a good reason to make your website mobile-ready and responsive: about 69% of consumers order food online using their mobile device. As websites have become the virtual representative of any business, having a high-quality site performing well across various browsers on (desktop and mobile devices) will certainly earn user interest and trust – and have them coming back for more.
2. Use high-quality food photography
Everyone in the food industry knows people feast with their eyes first and foremost. Food marketing is a case of show-don’t-tell. High-quality and high-resolution photos will say more about your food and drinks than any well-crafted copy can. Investing in this visual marketing strategy can get customers to walk into your restaurant or order online, effectively boosting your sales.
3. Use an advanced gallery system
Set up an interactive gallery system for your photographs and equip them with social sharing features. This will easily make your images go viral and woo the appetite of customers.
4. Monitor your Facebook page daily and make sure your profile is completed properly
Facebook is where your customers are, and it’s where you should be too. Your Facebook profile serves as your direct connection to hungry, eager customers. Make sure it’s updated daily and contains all the necessary information, such as description, location, opening hours, contact number, email address, reviews and photos.
5. Monitor your Twitter profile daily and make sure it’s completed properly
Like your Facebook profile, your Twitter profile is another powerful marketing tool to establish online popularity and visibility to hungry customers. It also needs to have whatever information your social media visitors want to know about you.
6. Post engaging content to both Facebook and Twitter daily
It’s not enough to create social media accounts. There must be a continuous, daily stream of updates and interesting content that let your customers know you’re active, social and at their disposal. To make things convenient, you can implement a social media scheduling system with our free social media management dashboard.
7. Create a profile on TripAdvisor
Creating a profile for your restaurant on TripAdvisor, the world’s leading travel site, is a great opportunity to connect with potential customers. Once it’s up and running, you can check reviews (good or bad) daily and respond to reviews needing your immediate attention. It’s a good way to assure any disappointed customers that you’re working hard to improve your food and service.
8. Set up a Google+ Page
Google+ gives you the opportunity to build a list of followers and interact with your target audience. Make sure to complete your restaurant profile, including basic information, plenty of high-quality photos of the dishes and the establishment’s interior and exterior.
9. Use an interactive menu system
In the highly digital world, your customers expect everything to be fast, convenient and interactive. The same goes for your menu system, which should feature easy navigation and high-quality photos of your dishes. The Old Bank, for example, not only delights people with their food, but also with their menu experience.
10. Make use of Facebook Ads geo-targeting capabilities
Facebook Ads are known for its impressive, fine-tuned targeting. For restaurants, its geo-targeting capabilities are particularly helpful in getting nearby customers through the door and boosting your sales.
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11. Send out a monthly newsletter
Email marketing has worked for businesses before, and it’s still highly effective now. Sending out newsletters, in particular, is one of the most inexpensive ways to reach your customers. Use your newsletter to announce new menu items and special discounts. To help you get started, MailChimp offers a ‘limited and free’ online email marketing solution to send emails, manage subscribers, and track results.
12. Share positive press
Good publicity is good for any business. Getting featured or cited in news, press releases, and magazine articles will spread good word about your restaurant and encourage potential customers to see the fuss for themselves. Take this article about Kemptown, Brighton for example, which mentioned The Old Bank and got many people curious about the food.
13. Create an Instagram account
The hashtag #FoodPorn is most often used in Instagram, where charming filtered snaps of yummy eats are followed and liked by foodies everywhere. Just as in Facebook and Twitter, this is where your restaurant needs to be. To stay relevant, never miss a day without posting a picture of your food, whether it’s your dessert special of the day or an all-time favourite.
14. Offer a free meal to a food blogger
Many food bloggers have a huge following and can influence the buying (in this case, dining) decision of their followers. Especially for new restaurants, generating positive reviews and hype through this powerful medium is a smart and inexpensive marketing move. Just offer a free meal to a willing blogger and hope for a favourable feedback. Never beg nor ask.
15. Partner up with a delivery service
A reliable delivery service is one of the most sought-after qualities of any restaurant, just as a hungry and impatient customer is its downfall. To build and maintain a good reputation in customer service, partner up with some of the country’s biggest delivery services, like deliveroo.co.uk.
16. Use an online booking system
Ease of use is the hallmark of any good website. For restaurants, that includes using an online booking system to streamline the process of reserving table. A good example is The Old Bank’s optimised booking system. You can never go wrong with making your customer’s life a little bit easier.
17. Set Up Google alerts
Google Alerts will notify you when your restaurant name or any related keyword appears in a new piece of content on the Internet. This makes it easy to keep track of people talking about your food and services.
18. Create a Pinterest account
Like Instagram, Pinterest is a platform ideal for promoting visual products – meaning your food and drinks. Again, the key is consistency and proactivity. That’s why it’s both effective and convenient to have a social media management dashboard that allows you to manage and oversee social profiles from a single platform.
19. Respond to Facebook messages immediately
Customers want prompt response for their queries and concerns. Replying to Facebook messages within an average of 5 minutes and having a response rate of 90% will earn you ‘The Very Responsive’ badge. This shows your visitors and customers that you care, thus enhancing your customer service reputation.
20. Use Google Analytics
Search engine optimisation is another critical online marketing strategy for businesses of all sizes and niche. Use Google Analytics to monitor your website’s traffic and implement SEO tactics accordingly.
21. Ensure all On-Page SEO are done properly
On-page SEO tactics help you rank by identifying the keywords you should optimise your website for. Moreover, a technical SEO audit provides recommendations to help you resolve any issues preventing your web pages from ranking.
22. Claim your restaurant’s profile on Foursquare
Every business out there has probably heard of Foursquare and its marketing advantages. Claiming a listing on Foursquare gives you a strong online profile, complete with the restaurant name, address, contact information, hours of operation, as well as links to your website, social media accounts, and menu.
23. Make sure your website is current
Make sure your website is regularly updated, in terms of security/software and content. It should have the latest defence against security and correctly reflect your current menu, contact number, and location. Besides, people don’t want to see Christmas menus during Easter or other months of the year. To avoid these common pitfalls, don’t think twice about outsourcing your website’s maintenance to ensure a professional look and feel at all times.
24. Offer gift vouchers
Gift vouchers allow more customers discover your restaurant and are a fantastic force of marketing potential, which you should be taking advantage of. The Old Bank definitely has.
25. Offer great deals
Offering discounts and promotions is one of the quickest ways to lure
customers into your restaurant. If you give them something worthwhile, you’ll continue to generate a steady, loyal crowd. For example, The Old Bank attracts its customers with ‘all you can eat’ and ‘buy one, get another for half price’ deals.
Unlocking your restaurant’s marketing potential opens up a whole new world of sales opportunities. It leads you to a variety of avenues and platforms to promote your brand, interact with customers, and establish a solid client base – all ingredients for long-term marketing success.
How To Market A Restaurant – Bonus Tip
Create a promotional video to market your great deals on YouTube. Having a presence on YouTube for your business is essential, as YouTube is now the second largest search engine. Optimised YouTube videos promoting restaurant deals have the potential to get found and viewed by literally thousands of potential customers. Not only does this marketing tactic offer great exposure for a brand within the YouTube platform, but YouTube has the potential to send a ton of traffic to your restaurant website too.
Free Social Media Management Dashboard For Restaurants
The self serve version of the dashboard is completely free to use. Simply create a free account via the blue button. Once logged in, restaurants are able to create posts and schedule them to publish to their social media accounts. The dashboard is an easy to use tool that allows centralised control of major social networks. The pro version provides clear statistics presented as a set of interactive graphs and charts. Content performance statistics include your most successful posts on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Additionally, you can find out which content performs the best and generates the most clicks. (Clicks can be broken down further to see which network provides the most and at which time and what day.) You can find out what your top #hashtags on Facebook versus Twitter. There are even powerful search tools, allowing the user to find curated content to publish, such as videos, topical news and trending content.
Click on the blue button to get your free social media management dashboard and start scheduling content to your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts today!
Need Help Creating and Scheduling Content To Engage Your Target Audience?
If you would like us to create engaging content for your social media accounts to help promote your restaurant across the major social networks, Facebook and/or Twitter to attract new customers and widen brand awareness, contact us today.
Click on the following link to get more details about our Social Media Management Services.