Running a restaurant is hard. But one of the biggest challenges is increasing revenue and differentiating your restaurant from competitors.
That’s why marketing your restaurant is so famous.
The good news is that today, there are many ways to market restaurants and dominate your competitors. So, we will discuss 24 very effective marketing strategies to get your customer’s attention and make your restaurant successful.
Basics: Understand Your Customers
How to buy a restaurant effectively?
Every marketing strategy starts with analyzing your customers. So how do you approach and connect with your customers if you don’t know them?
So first, you need to analyze your customers. Here are some parameters to analyze:
- Demographics: Characteristics such as age, income, gender, education, race, religion, and location.
- Psychographics: Their attitudes, goals, and beliefs.
- Behavior: Their habits: like how much money they spend, how much time they spend online, etc.
We need not discuss all this in detail. But you have to keep this in mind when marketing.
But why is it important?
You need to know the demographics of your customers so you know when, where, and how to contact them. For example, if most of your customers are young, placing an ad in a newspaper may not be cost-effective. Instead, you should probably run an Instagram ad campaign.
Basics: Understand your competitors
Now we come to the second important part. Find out what your competitors are doing and how you can be different and better.
Here are some things to write down:
- List all the restaurants in your area. (Use Google Maps to determine)
- Big popular restaurants
- Your top competitors
- Small restaurants
- Identify your direct competitors.
- (Let’s say you own a Pizza restaurant. If there is another Pizza restaurant in that area, then that restaurant will be your direct competitor.)
- Are your competitors successful?
- What reasons contributed to their success?
Observe your competitors
Once you have created a list of your competitors, you can find out how they advertise their restaurants.
But how can you know this?
It is simple. Think like their customers.
Here are some examples:
Go to Google and “search” for your restaurant’s kitchen. For example, “Pizza restaurants near me,” “(Your type of restaurant) near me.”
Facebook and other social media platforms
Your competitors may have a Facebook page, Instagram page, or other social media accounts. Watch them learn about social media marketing strategies.
You can check out their posts and ads to learn important marketing strategies.
Visit and observe your competitor’s restaurant as a customer.
- Check out their marketing tools like coupons, signs, posters, etc.
- What kind of local events and festivals do they attend? And what are they doing there?
- What discounts do they offer to attract customers?
- Are they using SMS or email marketing? What do they write on them?
This information will help you comprehend and implement your competitors’ marketing strategies.
This will also help you understand how you are different from your competitors. In marketing, this is called a Unique Selling Proposition (USP).
Basics: Sign up for Google My Business
Google My Business is a free and indispensable marketing tool for your restaurant. You can make your restaurant visible on Google and Google Maps.
If someone types “Mexican restaurant near me” into Google, your restaurant may be displayed. In addition, they will receive helpful information about the restaurant, including its address, phone number, and website.
Above, we Googled “best Italian restaurant in the United States.” The first two arrows you see are Google My Business results.
This facilitates the discovery of your restaurant and attracts more customers. Your restaurant must be listed on Google. You must create a profile/account on Google, sign in, and claim your business on Google.
You can enter all relevant information about your business, and within a few weeks, your business profile will appear on Google and Google Maps.
Restaurant Marketing Using Social Media Platforms
Social media marketing is currently a major trend. When done properly, it is inexpensive and highly effective. For restaurant business plan consulting is also very important.
Important Note: You do not need a global or national audience on your social media channels. You should only target individuals within your city. This is because people from outside your city do not frequent your restaurant.
How to buy a restaurant on social media?
Here are some strategies you can implement:
Images of delicious food are captivating. People enjoy seeing them.
Filling your Instagram profile with pictures of your restaurant’s best dishes is a fantastic way to attract customers. You can use the help of a professional photographer or take these photos yourself. But, first, make sure they look attractive.
Creating a popular Instagram profile is somewhat challenging. First, start a small advertising campaign to acquire your initial Instagram followers. Then, you can allow your channel to grow naturally. We will discuss this further in the future.
Facebook has a huge reach and is a powerful marketing tool for your restaurant.
Create a Facebook business page before doing anything else. Then you can post some photos of your best dishes. But, of course, you also need to post banner ads to market your restaurant.
How do you promote your Facebook page? How to get Facebook likes?
Here are some tips on how to get likes on your Facebook page:
- Run (low budget) Facebook ads in your area to get your first Facebook likes. We’ll discuss that later.
- Join Facebook Groups and share your posts. This will get a lot of views. (Note: Join Facebook groups located in your city)
- Create your own food-related Facebook Group. For example, “Club for food lovers.”
- Giveaways For example, “Share this post, and you can win a free meal at our restaurant.”
- Utilize Facebook Polls to attract the interest of your customers.
- Videos are very effective on Facebook. They are attractive, and people love to watch them. For example, you can create short 90-second videos on dishes, kitchen functions, etc.
Twitter is another appropriate marketing channel for your restaurant. For instance, you can post images alongside a brief message.
Messages can be used to communicate with other Twitter users. However, you should only contact people in your city. This is because people from outside your city do not frequent your restaurant.
Marketing restaurants using your website
Having a website for your restaurant is important today. Yes, a website is an excellent channel for marketing your restaurant.
But most importantly, a functional website allows you to accept online orders.
Let’s discuss it in more detail:
Search engine optimization (SEO) means ranking in Google or other search engines. If someone Googles something, your website will come up, and they can visit it.
SEO has many aspects, including content writing, title, and headline optimization, keyword research, and more. It is impossible to discuss every topic here. If you want to learn more about restaurant SEO, you can read this article.
I would advise new restaurant owners to hire an independent SEO expert. These days such services are quite affordable. You can hire from Fiverr or Upwork.
For more info please visit: https://www.mbplans.com/
Developing a customer list is advantageous for any business. When you have a customer email list, you can contact them anytime.
You can collect these email addresses by placing a form on your website. These forms can also collect valuable customer information, such as the customer’s name and date of birth.
You can inform them of your most recent discounts. In addition, you may include their names in every email and even send birthday greetings. This will ensure that your customers remember your restaurant.
However, creating such a complex system can be very difficult for new restaurant owners. Also another disadvantage is that using it too often can annoy your customers.
Marketing restaurants through online advertising
Can new restaurants offer to advertise?
How to advertise a restaurant?
The truth is that online advertising is usually quite affordable. Moreover, it can yield a huge return on investment when done right. So let’s discuss it in more detail:
The most popular advertising platform for restaurants is Google Ads.
When you create a Google ad, your business will appear on the first page of Google search results for the “search query” you specify (keyword).
“Search query” (search query/keyword) refers to the word or phrase users enter into Google’s search bar.
Therefore, if you advertise for that search query/keyword, such as “The best restaurants in my city,” people will see your restaurant.
So if you advertise for that search query/keyword, for example, “The best restaurants in my city,” the restaurant will appear to people.
The ads appear in the top yellow section of the Google search page.
Remember we talked about Google My Business?
We will use it to attract more customers to your restaurant.
For a new restaurant, it is best to start advertising on Google My Business. Let’s talk about how to do it:
- Sign in to your profile on Google My Business.
- Select the “Create Ad” option.
- Choose a goal for your ad campaign.
- Receive phone calls from your customers
- Attract people to visit your restaurant
- Choose your location.
- Select your search queries/keywords.
- Enter more information about your restaurant.
- Write an attractive headline and description.
- Preview your ad. also, make modifications if required.
- Start advertising also monitors campaign performance.
Google Ads is one of the best means of advertising for a restaurant. However, keep in mind that it may take some time to get favorable results.
Facebook is used by more than 2 billion people every month! So Facebook ads can prove to be extremely profitable for your restaurant. Returns may require time and resources, but they will be worthwhile.
Facebook ads can be simple and complex. It’s your choice. If you’re new to Facebook ads, we suggest you create a simple ad.
Videos are very effective in getting people’s attention. This is why videos are so successful for advertising. This is why TV commercials are so popular. But TV ads are usually very expensive.
Advertisements on YouTube are a more cost-effective alternative to television advertisements.
You can hire a photographer or use your smartphone to create a promotional video for your restaurant. For example, you can show your interior design, staff, and kitchen and praise them. You can then upload this video to Youtube and promote it.
YouTube advertisements are a more economical alternative to television advertisements.
You can hire a photographer or create a promotional video for your restaurant using your smartphone.
Setting up Instagram ads is easy; you can do it right from your Facebook account. First, make sure you have an Instagram profile. Then, when creating a Facebook ad, you can set the “Instagram” option, and your ad will appear on Instagram.
Creative digital marketing techniques
How to buy your restaurant online?
We have already mentioned the most popular methods. Now, let’s discuss more ways to market your business online.
Online Delivery Services
You should collaborate with popular delivery services if you do not have a website that accepts online orders or delivery services.
These services will handle the entirety of your restaurant’s delivery process. In addition, these businesses will handle online food orders, payment processing, and delivery to your customers. The only drawback is that they frequently demand a commission.
There are numerous food delivery services worldwide:
- And much more
To discover what is well-liked in your city, Google it.
Alternative: In addition, you can create your online delivery platform. It is simple and inexpensive.
Online Review Sites
There are numerous popular websites where people post reviews of local restaurants and businesses. For instance, Yelp is a popular online review site in the United States. In addition, there are numerous other international websites similar to Zomato. Perform a Google search to determine which review website is popular in your area.
Positive reviews on such sites will add credibility to your restaurant brand and bring you more customers.
Another thing to remember is how you handle reviews. For negative reviews, always respond politely and professionally.
Local business directories
These are similar to online review sites. Few people use it because Google Maps generally discovers new businesses. You don’t need to focus on them too much. Just spend some time listing your business in these directories.
Use Google to search for these queries: “Local Business Directory” or “Restaurant Directory.” You will receive the lists.
Use Google Notifications
Google Alerts will alert you whenever someone mentions your business name online. This can assist you in monitoring your company’s reputation.
This method is suitable for popular and established restaurants.
Social Media Enhancers
Have you ever seen food bloggers? They are highly influential on social media and frequently post photographs of food from new restaurants. These images have thousands of views and likes.
Let’s say you invite or sponsor an Instagram influencer with an Instagram profile with 5000 followers. This individual can photograph your special dishes and upload them to their profile. As a result, thousands of people will view your restaurant’s food. This will attract many customers to your restaurant.
You can search for these Instagram influencers on Instagram to locate them. You can also search Google to find personal blogs. However, unlike social media channels, here you cannot know how many visitors these blogs have.
Offline Marketing Methods for Restaurants
Digital marketing techniques have become very popular, but conventional advertising techniques are not yet obsolete.
Let’s discuss some interesting financial methods for marketing your restaurant without using the Internet.
This section of the article is especially useful for restaurants that have a lot over 55 customers. This is because most seniors are not very digital media savvy.
Additionally, these strategies are useful for restaurants in townships and rural areas where digital media is not widely used.
Local magazines and newspapers
If you have funds left over after investing in digital marketing, you can advertise in local newspapers and magazines. However, this can be quite costly and inefficient compared to digital advertising.
The best days to advertise are Sundays. The good idea is to put a coupon in the newspaper or magazine. This can get a lot of attention.
For this type of advertising, it is best to consult a public relations (PR) agency or a PR professional.
Food festivals, sporting events, and concerts are great ways to get publicity for your restaurant. But, of course, this will also increase your income.
You also need to consider how you can be unique and better than the rest of the restaurants that come to these festivals. Here are some ideas to get people’s attention at such events:
- Offer a cuisine that no one else offers
- You offer excellent service
- Decorate your stand creatively
- Offer good food at attractive prices
SMS remains a cost-effective and efficient method for attracting customers. However, you will need to invest in software for mass messaging. Utilize Google Search to determine which local business provides this service.
With this software, you can:
- Get more online orders
- Send your discount coupons via SMS
Support of non-profit social programs
This is an effective method for gaining popularity and enhancing your restaurant’s reputation. In addition, this will help you connect with your customers emotionally.
Participate in food-related social events like supporting farmers, reducing food waste, free food for poor people, etc.
Coupons and Discounts
People love sales! Offering discounts is a good way to get people’s attention.
You can put up a board outside your restaurant to inform people about new food and drink discounts.
Best advice: Offer great food and service
Your restaurant’s best marketing tool is its food and service. People will not only return to your restaurant if you serve delicious food, but they will also recommend it to their friends and family. This will lead to rapid expansion for your restaurant.
Therefore, invest in hiring the best employees.
It is difficult for restaurant owners to manage these marketing processes while running their establishment.
Most of the procedures we described are simple to administer, including Google My Business, online ordering, and Facebook ads. But techniques like SEO, email marketing, and newspaper ads can be quite demanding and expensive to implement.
We suggest you try every method and see what works best for your business.
Here is a summary of all methods:
- Understand your customers
- Observe your competitor’s marketing strategies
- List your restaurant on Google My Business
- Utilize social networking sites such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
- Utilize your restaurant’s website – accept online orders and implement search engine optimization and email marketing
- Conduct online advertising campaigns such as Google AdWords, Facebook, and YouTube.
- Work with popular online delivery services
- Improve your reputation on online review sites
- List your business in local business directories
- Set up Google Notifications
- Invite social media influencers
- Advertise in local magazines and newspapers
- Participate in local events
- SMS marketing
- Support a non-profit program
- Offer coupons and discounts
- You offer great food and service
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