Running a restaurant can be a pretty tiresome experience. A restaurant is a vigorous business that requires you to maintain strong faces on many fronts. You need to manage suppliers, customers, and not to mention the employees. Furthermore, the food industry is one of the most competitive industries ever. Therefore, the need to be ever on your toes, especially with marketing and branding. Already, restaurants have been hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, thus the need to be proactive with marketing. Here are marketing ideas to help your restaurants to the next level;
Start Customer loyalty programs
If there is something customers love, most is being appreciated and valued. That gives you the urge to appreciate your customers in very many ways. One of the best ways to appreciate your customers is through loyalty programs. Through such programs, you get to reward your loyal customers with discounts and amazing price cuts.
One way to do that is through the good old punch cards. They may not be as popular as some years past, but they still do the job.
The best part about loyalty programs is, you don’t have to do it on your own. There are so many good third-party companies that have already running loyalty programs. You can try to partner with companies such as Loyal Blocks, LevelUp, Belly, Perka.
Try email newsletter
What do you do to keep in touch with your customers? Have you ever thought of monthly newsletters for your loyal customers? Well, maybe, you should. Newsletters have become quite popular, but some people are misusing it. Newsletters can become such a nuisance to customers who feel they are frequent. But, if used correctly, newsletters are such an effective marketing tool for the restaurant owner.
The newsletter can be monthly, and you can use it to showcase the latest dishes, success stories of the month, or upcoming special discounts. Feeling the need to start a newsletter, but you don’t know how to go about it? We can help. At CEO Marketing, we will help you craft a selling email or provide you with ready-made templates.
Engage more users through user-generated content
As a restaurant owner, you can initiate more connection with your customers through User-Generated content. The UGC gives you a chance to get up close and personal with the customers. The way it works is pretty simple; actually, you get to use its content on your social media platforms or website. You can use things like photo contests of the favorite meals or preparing similar recipes as your chefs. The contest winners should be awarded through random selection or a voting system through social media.
By so doing, you are engaging your users in levels that will be felt far and wide. You will also win over customers and turn irregular customers into amazing long-term customers.
Bank on Instagram
It is an open secret that some social media platforms work better than others, depending on the content, of course. Instagram is a perfect place to post foodie photos. People are attracted to visual content more than any other form of content. Instagram encourages food porn, where people post their favorite dishes.
Look for professional photographers and ensure the quality of pictures is top-quality. You can make use of Instagram stories and post your meal of the day there.
Maintain positive Yelp reviews
By now, you understand just how important reviews are to businesses. For restaurants, Yelp reviews are everything and have the power to make or break your reputation. Yelp is such a rich ground for customers, and you need to do all you can to maintain a positive outlook. Keep in mind that people will review your restaurant even if you don’t have a Yelp account. Thus, you must, we repeat, must have a Yelp account. Stay on your Yelp reviews and ensure that you get ahead of every concern raised by the customers.
Use coupons and discounts
Coupons are a sure way to keep your customers interested and keep coming back for more. It shows that you are thinking of them, and you are ready to reward their loyalty. You can always try new things such as free meals to new email subscribers or give coupons to frequent customers.
Discounts also work wonders as people are always looking out for ways to save a few bucks. You can choose to give discounts on certain days of the week for specific products. Something like “terrific Tuesdays” when you buy one, get one free. It may seem small or expensive on your side, but it will definitely bring in more sales.
Build a strong online presence
You cannot ignore just how important having a strong online presence has become. People are turning to the internet to look for their purchases or take out meals. As a restaurant, you should position your brand to be more visible and more accessible. It all starts with building an incredible website where you work with the web designers to create a site that works. Work on social media platforms and post engaging content throughout.
Marketing is an essential part of any business. As restaurants continue to feel the current pandemic effects, some of the above tips can help them mitigate the risks. It is vital to remember that marketing is a long, tedious process that requires consistency and discipline. Some of the above tips are easier said than done, and you will need to be well prepared to play long ball.
Reach out to us if you want help with any of the above or more.