Restaurant Marketing Guide: Everything You Need to Know
If you ever wonder how you can take your restaurant marketing efforts to the next level, then you’re in the right place! Here is a complete restaurant marketing guide, which includes everything you need to learn. From traditional efforts to modern twists on promotion, this restaurant marketing guide has everything you need to begin.
Restaurant Marketing Done Right: 10 Useful Tips to Know About
Are you starting a bar or restaurant? Or, are you searching for new restaurant marketing tips? Learning about restaurant marketing done right is the first step toward success. Read on to learn all about it.
10 Essential Restaurant Marketing Tips
As a business owner or restaurant manager, it’s now your time to get creative. Once you execute on-brand strategies, you should expect to experience great results. So, let’s learn about ten valuable restaurant marketing ideas.
1. Learn How to Find a Target Audience
To speak to the right customers, conduct market research. In discovering your target audience, ask yourself these questions:
- Where do my customers live?
- How old are my customers?
- What are my customers’ favorite dishes?
- What is the average cart value of each order?
- Which days and times of the week are busiest?
2. Create Custom QR Codes
3. Launch a Loyalty Program
A restaurant loyalty program assits restaurant marketing done right. Such data can sync with the restaurant POS platform to simplify collecting points and redeeming rewards.
4. Offer Promotions and Discounts
5. Utilize Food Delivery Apps
When you offer delivery services, you have the opportunity to net higher cart values. Online ordering apps can be a major driver of sales, regardless of your location.
6. Host Restaurant Events
People are always looking for something fun to do in their area. Whether you become known for live music or trivia nights, events are ideal for generating higher sales in a short time period.
7. Be Active On Social Media
Studies show that people spend about two and a half hours scrolling through social media daily. Stay active on all relevant platforms to generate and maintain awareness.
8. Implement Restaurant SEO Strategies
9. Conduct a Restaurant Review Program
Positive customer reviews serve as the best marketing material. Word-of-mouth markeitng is the most effective kind of promotion. Plus, reviews provide social proof that people love your business.
10. Leverage Print Ads
Traditional marketing isn’t completely obsolete and can help generate sales. There are several ways to gain exposure for an eatery, from local sponsorships to displaying posters in local businesses.
What Is Restaurant Marketing?
Restaurant marketing is the practice of promoting your eatery to the public. It can be digital or traditional, but always serves to generate traffic.
Importance of Restaurant Marketing
Restaurant marketing can differ from one tactic to the next. However, the top goal for all of them is to increase awareness and maximize profits. So, let’s check out five restaurant marketing ideas you can implement right now.
1. Restaurant Specials
Is there a dish that the chefs always get right? Or, has there been a meal that customers always order? Try prioritizing these items in promotional materials.
2. Restaurant Promotions and Discounts
Check the POS system to verify the busiest times and days of the week. Then, decide when you can offer deals, check your budget, and choose what to offer customers.
3. Unique Restaurant Menu
If a restaurant is inclusive, every patron can stop by. Cater to dietary restrictions and preferences to generate as much inflow and revenue as possible.
Different menu types that your restaurant can offer include:
- Dairy– and lactose-free
- Vegan and vegetarian
- Nut-free or allergen-friendly
4. Operate 24/7
One of the many reasons fast food restaurants generate so much revenue is that they operate 24/7. From travelers to night shift workers, there are many reasons why people get food after-hours.
5. Develop an Online Presence
Social media is vital for restaurant marketing tactics. Ensure that you optimize your profiles by highlighting the best aspects of your eatery, focusing on menu items.
As you implement social media tactics for restaurant marketing operations, ensure that you know how to calculate the social media ROI to track results.
Restaurant marketing strategies are abundant; however, digital marketing is more likely to support results. Sometimes, traditional marketing can offer a high ROI. However, we encourage you choose digital marketing strategies to get the most out of your investments.
What Is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing consists of promotions that utilize tech and software. If digital restaurant marketing strategies aren’t part of your restaurant business plan, keep reading to learn more about how they ca help you achieve success.
Restaurant Marketing Strategies
Whether you want to increase restaurant profits or reduce expenses (or both), the right marketing strategies will allow you to do so. Innovative restaurant technology establishes many restaurant marketing strategies. Keep reading to learn about five digital marketing strategies to enhance your eatery:
1. Restaurant Loyalty Programs
Trust and loyalty are powerful within the marketing landscape. Implement a restaurant loyalty program to establish the right environment to increase sales.
2. App-Exclusive Discounts
Apps allow eateries to accept more orders than they can fulfill within the walls of their establishment. Every business is viewable as consumers browse local eateries, too.
3. Local SEO Efforts
Consider restaurant SEO if you want the msses to discover your business. Tactics you can implement include optimizing web pages with the proper keywords, meta descriptions, page tags, and URL slugs.
4. Get Social Online
Create accounts on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. These two sites rely on visual content, which is ideal for displaying dishes and restaurant-related content. Post content regularly, and don’t forget to be social with local consumers and businesses.
5. Send Out Email Marketing Campaigns
Email campaigns are the most direct form of communication besides direct mail. This idea should get you excited to vuild email campaigns, as you’re just a few clicks away from sending messages straight to your customer base.
If you’re opening a restaurant, you’re likely seeking creative promotional ideas. As you write your business plan, detail ways to increase revenue by attracting your ideal customer profile.
Why Is Restaurant Promotion So Important?
Restaurant promotion is a major driver of traffic. Various restaurant promotion campaigns can result in more customers dining at your eatery. Depending on your cuisine and niche market, there are many restaurant promotion ideas to implement.
Restaurant Promotion Ideas
From fancy mixed drink specials to restaurant tech, numerous tactics can generate traffic. Read on to learn which restaurant promotion ideas we suggest.
1. Restaurant Loyalty App
2. Advertise a Menu QR Code
Restaurant owners can use a QR code in advertising materials, like flyers. Some even claim that they can reduce expenses since it costs a lot to replace paper menus.
3. Become Available On Delivery Apps
Mobile ordering allows eateries to increase their overall number of orders. Consider all the people who aren’t in the position to dine out. Online ordering can significantly boost traffic from different sources.
4. Host Seasonal Events
5. Give Back to the Community
Charity events typically get the community together. From hospitals to schools, there are probably more non-profits in your area than you’d think.
6. Sponsor Local Non-Profits
One of the best aspects of sponsorships is that such relationships last long-term. Sponsors usually sign a contract with the organization, ensuring a long-temr partnership.
7. Implement Restaurant SEO Tactics
An SEO strategy is vital for boosting and sustaining website traffic. Target keywords and proper structure will cause your web content to rank higher than the competition, leading your ideal consumers to discover your business.
8. Invest In Paid Advertisements
Before creating paid ads, learn how to calculate various metrics, such as impressions and CTR, to track results. These number will also help coordinate future strategies.
9. Create a Happy Hour Menu
It’s Time to Put Some Restaurant Promotion Ideas to Use
Take it slow in the beginning and determine what works for your restaurant. Every target audience is different, so don’t be afriad of trial and error.
10 Tips For a Restaurant Email Marketing Strategy
As you consider restaurant marketing ideas to implement, you’ll come across the significance of an email marketing strategy. It’s one of the most effective marketing strategies a business can utilize.
Email Marketing Strategy: What Is It?
An email marketing strategy is a plan to send promotional, product-, or service-related messages to increase sales. Some include imagery and copy, while others are more sales-centric.
Types of Email Marketing
Email marketing can differ from one strategy to another. The goals for your email marketing strategy will dictate which ones you send.
- Email Newsletters: One-off messages that center around one or multiple topics.
- Transactional Emails: Messages that are sent upon a change within a system. Digital receipts and password resets are popular transactional emails.
- Behavioral Emails: Messages people receive after engaging with a business online, thanks to marketing automation software.
Email Marketing Tips
Though restaurants are unique compared to other businesses, there are several ideas to know within the industry. Here are ten email marketing tips for eateries:
1. Showcase Menu Items
Menu items are your top selling points, which makes emails the perfect place to showcase your best content. Sharing reviews and testimonials are also ideal alongside photos of best-selling dishes.
2. Host Email-Exclusive Giveaways
Giveaways are creative ways to get people excited about a restaurant while building an email campaign list. Free survey platforms can accept customer email addresses.
3. Promote Online Ordering Options
Mobile ordering is a profitable strategy. It cuts expenses while expanding the eatery’s reach to a broader geographic market.
4. Advertise Late-Night Hours
If you own a quick service restaurant, stay open 24/7. If your emails pair with SMS alerts, after-hours alerts can boost sales. Sending reminders of menu items when most eateries are closed is a foolproof way to dominate a local market.
5. Pay Close Attention to Native Analytics
Open and click-through rates (CTRs) are the most important numbers. We also suggest frequently cleaning your subscriber list to make more room for engaging subscribers.
6. Write Catchy Copy
Subject lines are more impactful than you might think. In fact, this is the first impression for consumers.
7. Utilize Segmentation Features
Create a separate list for different customer types. Learn what different segments prefer; then, create lists accordingly.
8. Partner With Local Communities
In the partnership agreement, state that both parties are to promote the other in future campaigns. This will expose two brands to each other’s customer base.
9. Ensure a Mobile-Friendly Experience
Creative designs on a desktop might not appear the same on a phone. Since many people check their email on a phone, keep the visuals cohesive.
10. Don’t Overdo It
A good idea is to send weekly emails if they’re informative and monthly if they’re sales-centric. They’ll serve as refreshers without overdoing it.
A restaurant loyalty program can generate new traffic to your business. It can also incentivize current customers to come back. Loyalty programs can boost customer satisfaction, retain customers, and increase awareness.
Some of the most effective restaurant loyalty programs can change a business for the better, Let’s learn all you need to know before creating one.
What Is a Restaurant Loyalty Program?
A restaurant loyalty program is a system that gives perks to customers. Loyalty programs can attract repeat customers, establish new customer relationships, and increase profits.
The Best Time to Launch a Restaurant Loyalty Program
The timeline of launching a restaurant loyalty program should depend on the eatery’s reputation.
You should consider launching a restaurant loyalty program whether your business is old or new. So, let’s find out the different impacts it can have:
Loyalty Programs for New Restaurants
A loyalty program can generate exposure for a restaurant new to the area. Grand opening perks can entice new visitors. Then, the loyalty program will tempt them to return.
Loyalty Programs for Popular Restaurants
A restaurant loyalty program is ideal if your eatery is popular. It’ll be even better if it already drives a lot of traffic.
What to Remember When Launching a Restaurant Loyalty Program
- Customer retention is key for growth.
- Don’t create a lackluster loyalty program by offering low-quality rewards.
- A restaurant loyalty program can provide ideas for social media.
Examples for a Restaurant Loyalty Program
Be creative when launching a restaurant loyalty program. Remember what sells, who you’re serving, and your current finances. Some great ideas include:
- Seasonal discounts
- Holiday promotions
- Happy hour specials
- VIP rewards
A restaurant loyalty program doesn’t have to look like the typical “one point for each purchase” model. The rules and rewards will depend on the goals you have in mind for your business.
What to Consider Before Launching a Restaurant Loyalty Program
Launch a rewards program based on your specific eatery and customer base. Before creating it, ask these questions:
- Would you rather increase the turnover rate or total order values?
- Are you trying to utilize online ordering to expand your geographic reach?
- How much money do you need to make a profit?
- How many tiers do we want to create?
Virtual brands are profitable ventures. They’re a style of quick service restaurant, and combine the casual dining experience with innovative technology.
What Is a Virtual Brand?
Virtual brands are eateries that don’t offer the option to dine at a brick-and-mortar location. If you’re familiar with a ghost kitchen, they share many traits. Between eliminating many restaurant expenses and using delivery apps, virtual kitchens are quite lucrative.
Off-premise delivery apps allow eateries to reduce expenses with the following:
- Wait staff
- Decor and furniture
- Restaurant equipment, such as kiosks
- Dishware and glassware
- Physical menus
- Other types of inventory, such as paper goods
Benefits of Virtual Brands
Several popular reasons to open a virtual brand are:
- Managers can avoid the risk of an understaffed restaurant.
- Virtual brands can be trendy.
- Time management is rarely a concern.
- There is a much lower labor cost.
- Virtual brands can offer delivery or curbside pick up (or both).
How to Grow a Brand Online
Virtual brands are a simple business to launch from scratch. Converting a business into a virtual brand is also beneficial to simplify an already-existing eatery.
1. Use Delivery Apps
Virtual brands require apps to deliver food. Though some customers might call in their orders, apps are quite preferable. With apps, there is little to no chance of making mistakes or overseeing modification requests.
2. Reduce Average Order Volume (And Inventory By Proxy)
Inventory control should always be a top priority for virtual brands. Conduct a weekly audit to learn which dishes are best-sellers. Having exact stock on hand can also decrease food waste and spoilage.
3. Extend Your Hours
Most eateries aren’t open 24/7. Virtual brands can leverage this data to create a successful selling point. If your business is one of the few in your area that offers extended hours, it can easily become a go-to option.
4. Market Your Restaurant Online
Online marketing is vital for any restaurant. It’s even more important for virtual brands. Without a physical location, you must use digital realms for promotions. From email marketing to SEO, many ideas can be customized for your restaurant.
5. Offer Several Payment Options
Mobile payments, traditional credit cards, and gift certificates are a few options you should offer. By proving various options, you can capture all customers and never deter them at the checkout page.
Consumer data can serve as the foundation for lucrative marketing strategies. Plus, it can help the management team confidently make decisions. The metrics that one restaurant tracks may differ from another–continue reading to learn all about it.
Customer Data: Definition
Customer data consists of qualitative and quantitative insight about your audience. For restaurants, customer data is ideal for executing proper strategies and alluring new and existing customers.
What Would Prevent Data From Appearing In a Custom Report?
Skewed data can lead to errors and inaccurate insight. Make sure that data collection is standardized and exact every time. Incorrect spreadsheet formulas can lead to false metrics, too.
Customer Data Analytics You Should Collect
Data software show us various metrics. If you conduct marketing efforts for an eatery, check out these ten data points to frequently monitor.
1. Best-Selling Dishes
Such data can provide ways to cut restaurant expenses and increase profits. For example, managers can eliminate or keep fewer ingredients for dishes that don’t sell.
2. Email Addresses
Newsletters can include coupons, menu updates, event alerts, and so on. The best part? Email campaign software can offer suggestions to reach high open rates.
3. Phone Numbers
Phone numbers are required for SMS campaigns. Studies show that text alerts are more effective than email campaigns. Text alerts have an average open rate of 98%, while email campaigns average roughly 20%.
4. Geographic Location
Did you know that the geographic locations of your customers wil heavily l influence most of your marketing efforts? Perhaps you’ll be running ads. Or, maybe you’d like to hang flyers. These are just a few major reasons to analyze such data.
5. Age Range
If you learn that most of your consumer base is over 21 years old, it’s worth investing in getting a liquor license. Offering different types of alcohol will also help maximize profits, as things like happy hour and drink specials are excellent selling points.
6. Average Cart Value
The dollar amount customers spend on each bill is a crucial metric to understand. It’ll help dictate items to promote on mobile checkout pages, and help inspire deals.
7. Loyalty Member Status
Loyalty programs can boost sales right now and over time. Check data reports to see how many members exist in the system. If you find that most customers aren’t opting in, it might be time to work the program into restaurant promotions.
8. Payment Method
Eateries should offer various payment processing methods. However, ensure that every method is safe, simple, and secure.
9. Spending Habits
Do consumers add more to their cart on delivery apps? Are there days of the week when people pay more for drinks? Use data about spening habits to adjust the timing of different promotional efforts.
10. Interests and Preferences
Learn about customer interests and habits from social media metrics. This data can influence events, themes, local fandoms, etc.
Customer Data Integration: 5 Useful Tips
Customer data integration with other software is helpful for streamlining restaurant operations. Here are five tips to know when using a customer data platform:
- Use a system that integrates with your POS system.
- Use tools that offer native data reporting.
- Use a product that offers training to the staff.
- Ensure that a staff member can interpret data analytics.
- Use customer data integration software that includes current and historical data.