Marketing for restaurants. Best strategies
The competition in the world of restaurants is tremendous. Nowadays, and increasingly, it is essential to implement different digital marketing strategies for restaurants, which, of course, begin with having a good web design, in which the restaurant can show all its offerings, and it also serves as a destination point for the rest of the marketing tactics to be implemented.
By mixing different ingredients (marketing strategies) we can achieve the fantastic desired dish (restaurant branding) that provides us with a sustained flow of customers eager to know the experience and pleasure of being a diner in our restaurant.
Enjoy your meal!
The best marketing strategies for restaurants
Here I indicate some of what, in my opinion, are the best online marketing strategies for restaurants.
1. Set up a Google My Business account and encourage positive reviews
When a person searches for a restaurant on Google, if you have Google My Business configured. The Google Knowledge Graph will appear with all the details of the company in the sidebar. Google offers your potential customers more ways to contact your restaurant. You will also appear on Google Maps. Your potential customers will find you more easily, for example when they search for a restaurant in the area on their mobile phones.
2. Promote the best visual content of the restaurant on Social Networks
Use Instagram to promote the best visual content of your restaurant. Show your showcase, your best dishes, and use social media as the place to play with your brand identity. For example, a health food store might try taking photos of people kayaking, cooking, farming, or other activities that they think their fanbase will enjoy.
Also be sure to have a bit of fun with hashtags, whether it’s using popular Twitter hashtags or making up your own, hashtags are a great way to have fun with fans.
3. Locate the restaurant’s target customers and develop the online brand identity
Is the food in your restaurant aimed at customers who prefer a healthy diet? Or does your restaurant have a beer and wings kind of atmosphere? Understand who your target customers are, then build your brand around what interests them. Reflect these interests on your social media platforms and promotional material.
4. Implement an elegant and functional online menu
Users love to do research online before ordering or visiting your restaurant. Post a high-quality, easy-to-read, up-to-date and accurate menu.
5. Offer coupons and discounts online
Offering coupons and discounts for the restaurant is always a sure way to attract customers. You can offer a free dish to new email newsletter subscribers (we can also show you how to get more).
6. Maintain the restaurant’s Yelp and Trip advisor profiles and politely respond to negative comments
Platforms like Yelp and Trip advisor have enormous power in the restaurant industry, and having a strong backing of positive reviews on Yelp and Trip advisor can do wonders for the business.
The most important thing to understand about these platforms is that people can and will review them, even if you didn’t set up your account. For that reason, as a restaurant owner, you must be absolutely proactive and keep your account on these platforms so that they work in favor of the restaurant, and not against it.
7. Create geo-targeted restaurant ads on Google Ads, Facebook and Instagram
Most people are looking for good places to eat close to home or hotel, so you will get the most value from your online marketing efforts by investing primarily in geo-targeted ads. Geo-targeting ads help save money by ensuring that only users in certain cities or within a specific radius see your ads (eliminating non-relevant clicks, which can cost a lot of advertising money).
Many online advertising services, from Google Ads to Facebook to Twitter, offer geo-targeted ad options (at no additional cost). Make sure to take advantage of these handy targeting features to show the best ads to the best customers.
8. Use mobile ads in Google Ads
Restaurants are one of the best candidates for Google Ads mobile ads, as users often search for nearby dining options while on the go. Mobile ads tend to be cheaper than desktop ads, and mobile devices have impressive conversion rates.
Google Ads allows all kinds of targeting and personalization options for mobile devices that allow you to make the most of your budget. For example, you can increase bids at dinner time, when users often search for fast food on their mobile phones. Increasing the bids during the dinner period increases your chances of showing up for a specific query on Google.
9. Send regular newsletters to regular customers
Remember. Your newsletter doesn’t have to be weekly. Your customers will appreciate a less cluttered inbox if you simply send them one newsletter a month.
Use the email newsletter as an opportunity to announce events, discuss new menu items, or share special discounts with your regular customers.
10. Promote different content generated by restaurant customers on the web
Using content generated by your customers is a great way to develop personal and intimate engagement with them. Organize a photo contest asking customers to share their favorite food in your establishment and share the photos on a dedicated content page and on various social networks. Consider awarding a few random lucky contestants a free appetizer or another prize!
Hosting and promoting user-generated content shows customers that they are appreciated, turning occasional visitors into devoted customers.
11. Show restaurant staff on the web to get close
The human element is very important. Seeing happy and smiling employees does wonders for a company’s reputation as customers yearn to be served by happy workers.
12. Maintain a blog for the restaurant
Blogs offer the opportunity to experiment with the voice and personality of your restaurant. Share your successes and struggles, funny stories, recipes, and whatever else you think your customers might be interested in.
13. Promote offers, content and events based on monthly celebrations
There are dozens of holidays and relevant days during each month of the year that encourage our customers to visit their favorite restaurant. Take advantage of these types of dates for your promotions and content.
14. Use online home delivery services
In today’s Internet-driven environment, many online home delivery services streamline the ordering process, and savvy Internet users often love to take advantage of such delivery services.
15. Configure online booking tools
One marketing idea for fine dining restaurants is to consider signing up for Open Table. Open Table is an online booking tool that allows customers to book online for your property! Users love it when you make their life a little easier, and Open Table already has a loyal customer base that you can access.
If you are not yet applying the power of digital marketing to your restaurant, your competition will be leading your customers. Digital marketing will help you attract new customers and keep current ones. Are you ready to take the leap?
What digital marketing strategies have you implemented in your restaurant?