The digital marketing space has become an integral part of most businesses, including restaurants. It is cost-effective and has a lot of reach. Most businesses concentrate their efforts on digital media than on other media platforms. However it is not enough to merely have a digital presence, in order to reap benefits from going digital, careful planning is involved.
It is a no brainer that as a restaurateur, you should have your restaurant on social media. As opposed to other media forms, social media allows you to have conversations with current and potential customers. This is important as it helps with two important things:
- It helps your brand remain top of mind and relevant.
- It allows you to gain insight into what your customers want, needs and think about your restaurant.
This information, when used correctly, will help you provide the food and services your clients need. This builds loyalty and raises your bottom line.
When it comes to the restaurant business, a lot of people are enticed into trying a dish after they see pictures of the meal. You could provide a mouthwatering text description, but this plays second fiddle to the photo of the food. Instagram, being largely photography based, is the ideal social media platform for showcasing your restaurant.
Once you have created your social media accounts, invite customers to interact with your restaurant by posing fun questions or running contests.
An online contest could involve customers naming one of your signature drinks or dishes.
The interactive nature of social media also allows you to invite customers to post pictures of the food they have had at your restaurant. This will help spread the word about your offering to your customers’ networks. The more people hear about your restaurant, the better.
In order to encourage customers to take pictures, you need to make your whole restaurant Insta-worthy. Your decor has to reflect the brand you are trying to build and you need to have your lighting adjusted to provide the right picture quality. Another thing to be mindful of is your dish presentation. Customers usually get excited when presented with a meal that is aesthetically pleasing. This encourages them to take photos of the dish before tasting the food.
Get rave reviews
If you have not done so already, head over to review sites such as Yelp and claim your page. Post professionally taken photographs of your restaurant space and food. An advantage of review sites is that the feedback there can direct customers to your restaurant without you spending money on advertising. Provided you give consistently great service, you will garner rave reviews. The key is to keep responding to the comments you receive. Even the negative ones. If you do receive a complaint from a disgruntled customer, reassure them of your commitment to working out a solution. If possible, continue the conversation offline, where you can get to the root of the problem, without the added pressure of a global audience watching your interchange.
Evaluate your website
Your website might be the first item that comes up when customers look up your restaurant. Make sure it is well maintained with the right pictures and up to date information. It is also an opportunity for you to grow your mailing list by asking visitors to subscribe. You would then use the mailing list to run marketing campaigns. The website is also a great marketing tool if it contains information such as the background of your restaurant as well as a digital menu that allows customers to place orders wherever they are.
If you’ve not got a website for your restaurant already then at Napkin we offer a service where we can not only design a website for you but everything that goes along with it. From registering the domain name to securely hosting it. Contact us if you’d like to find out more about how we can help.
The digital marketing world abounds with opportunities that allow your brand to reach people all over the world, the above are just a few. Putting these ideas into practice may help you grow your restaurant and build customer loyalty.
Brand and communication expert,
Copywriter for Napkin