Restaurant Marketing Checklist for a Successful Summer
We all know how the hospitality industry has faced difficulties over the past two years and still, many are trying to make up for the business they have lost. Along with this, more people took this time to follow their dreams and move into the hospitality industry and open their own restaurants, so it is fair to say that it is more competitive and challenging than ever before.
However, with summer just a few weeks away, now is the ideal time to ramp up your marketing efforts in order to attract old customers, existing customers and new customers. Fortunately, when it comes to marketing, you have several options available although it is important to determine what will work for you. This will be based on the type of restaurant you have, your area as well as many other factors. So take a look at the following tips and put them to use to see how they can make your restaurant stand out and get noticed this summer.
Social Media Marketing
The power of social media marketing should not be underestimated but it has the potential to reach a huge audience quickly and easily. From Facebook where you can post videos and interact with potential customers to Instagram where you can showcase images of your food, you can really put your restaurant on the map. This is where you can build your brand, react to messages and comments, connect and take bookings through messenger and even offer rewards and discounts as well competitions.
Adwords and PPC are both excellent at getting your restaurant in front of people who are actually searching for restaurants just like yours. Taking this approach will require expertise, so it can pay to get a specialist hospitality marketing agency working with you to ensure you implement the correct strategies. However, this strategy can be used across Google, Facebook and many other platforms and that will enable you to reach out to users using customisation and targeting. This ensures that your bids work hard for you while your strategy can be fine-tuned so that you increase awareness around times when people are likely to be searching for restaurants such as lunchtime, dinner time and weekends. This will ensure that you appear for certain queries and might even be the first ad to appear for your kind of restaurant or cuisine.
While it is always good to welcome new customers through your doors, you need to focus on keeping the customers that you already have. Of course, you need to make sure that your food is perfect, the service is excellent and that they are getting value for money, otherwise they will have no issues in choosing one of your competitors next time.
So, consider implementing a loyalty reward system and you will soon see how much of an impact it can have. It’s a simple solution to implement but it can work wonders when retaining existing clientele. You can opt to give them a discount after they have dined with you several times or you could offer a free dessert. Furthermore, you can offer discounts, freebies and so much more when you choose a loyalty reward scheme. In addition, if your loyalty scheme proves to be a success, you can be sure that they will recommend your restaurant to others.
Review sites are extremely important and can underpin the success of a business when managed correctly. Of course, you cannot please every customer that you serve so you must be prepared for negative reviews but you can turn negative reviews into proof that you are a restaurant that cares.
The aim is to ensure you respond to all reviews as this will show that you really do value your customers but negative reviews have to be handled correctly. By responding positively to negative reviews, new customers will no longer only see a negative review but a restaurant that is good at taking action and recognising when a problem should be handled. So, if you do take this approach, it will require active management so you are seen to be doing something when things are not as they should be.
So, there is no single marketing strategy that will guarantee success for every restaurant this summer. Therefore, you might have to try out several options to discover what works for you and you might not be able to use one single channel alone. Therefore, using several different strategies will enable you to analyse the results in order to determine what works, what doesn’t and where you need to spend your money in order to see the best results this summer.