Effective Restaurant Marketing Strategies to Attract Local Customers

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Effective Restaurant Marketing Strategies to Attract Local Customers

Category : Restaurants

People love to eat and that is a well-known fact. Whether they are just chilling or are on the go, people are more than likely to grab something to eat when they are hungry. This is one of the biggest advantages of opening a restaurant business — the constant demand makes it quite lucrative. Although people love to enjoy and eat delicious foods, running a successful restaurant does not come easily. It requires gruelling work and considerable financial risk, taking a good deal of time, effort, patience, and money to maintain and keep your restaurant afloat.

Client satisfaction is crucial to any restaurant business to get great results. Just because you cook the most delectable dishes, there is still about sixty percent failure rate in the restaurant business. As a restauranteur, you need to understand that being in a food business goes well beyond that cooking beyond the most delicious dishes. The success of your business goes down on how well you carry out your marketing strategies. You need to establish your business with a solid foundation, and not create unsustainable expectations, such as discounts and promos.

Here are two important aspects that affect the success rate of your restaurant business:

  • Advertising and Marketing – When opening a restaurant, make sure to promote and market them to your customers properly. Using effective advertising and marketing methods can help attract and satisfy customers.
  • Quality Food and Services – Offering customers good food and services can make customers come to your restaurant over and over again.

To help you with your business, our team has gathered key marketing ideas and strategies not only to improve your business and sales but also to attract the attention of growling stomachs:

● Define Your Goals

Effective Restaurant Marketing Strategies to Attract Local Customers

To be successful in the restaurant industry, you must know your target customers so you can map out your goals. Without knowing who to target, you may use your resources improperly and rely on inefficient, scattershot, and expensive advertising methods. Once you identify your ideal customers, you will the ability to design your marketing approach the best way possible. You can also take advantage of the different social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc) to target them accurately.

● Have a Functional Website Ready

To stay on top of the fierce competition of the restaurant industry, you need to give your all to be successful. Nowadays, running a successful business is not limited to opening a brick and mortar restaurant. In today’s digital world, having a fully functional and responsive website is the best yet inexpensive way to market your business to your local target customers. Additionally, a website can open more opportunities to reach a much larger market audience. It allows potential customers to find you easier on the Internet.

● Set up Your Google+ Account

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Setting up a Google+ account for your restaurant is highly important for your business. When a potential customer searches for a business online, Google’s Knowledge Graph collects crucial details from your Google+ account. Encouraging your visitors to write a review on Google+ is beneficial because the Knowledge Graph gives a bonus to Google user reviews. Also, include the location, phone numbers, opening and closing schedules. This helps potential local customers find your restaurant.

● Establish Your Social Media Presence

Effective Restaurant Marketing Strategies to Attract Local Customers

Credit: slideshare.net

This graph shows the different social media platforms (Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter) used by restaurant businesses. It measures the average number of interactions per post per 1000. Among the social media channels, you can see that Instagram has the highest percentage when it comes to engagement ratio and median social media audience. Instagram became a game changer in the restaurant business. The pressure of having Insta-worthy post made restauranteurs reconsider their menu and food presentation to attract potential customers. to come in through the doors. Instagram does not only enables you to share enticing photos of food but also allows you to interact with your customers before and after their dining experience.

In this era of food porn, having a social media presence comes with multiple marketing benefits when done properly. Various images of foods found in different social media channels can entice even the thrifty people to spend some extra cash. Promoting your restaurant online through social media is an effective way to keep the orders rolling in. Keep posting professionally-taken images and videos of foods to churn in profits. Mark Khoder, a restaurant social media strategist, once said, “Social media is more exciting than ever before, only for those who know how to drive it. If you need help, get help. Don’t wait.” If you need professional help, hire a SEO expert for restaurant to guide and give you valuable insights.

● Start a Blog

Effective Restaurant Marketing Strategies to Attract Local Customers

Build and establish a relationship with your community and engage with your customers with your blogs. Share stories, like your successes and struggles, recipes, and anything that is interesting to your customers. Blogs also help show the voice and personality of your restaurant. You do not need to constantly post blogs — just keep them fresh, relevant, and engaging. Use blogs to give updates about your latest menu, promos, and discounts.

● Develop a Customer Loyalty Program

One common way to set up a customer loyalty program is a membership card, which records the frequency of visits in exchange of earning a reward (free drinks, desserts, or d) of their choosing. Although they may be less expensive, these rewards can effectively still make your guests feel appreciated. Also, loyalty programs can encourage your customers to return twice as often. It allows you to build rapport and increase customer retention.

● Develop a Brand Identity

This video explains the developing a brand plays a major aspect in the success of any business. Neil Patel, a well-known online marketing expert, thoroughly explains the importance of building and how it anchors your business to a specific term. Take for example; when you think of tissues, you will immediately think of Kleenex. Branding is a marketing practice that helps identify and sets your products and/or services apart from your competitors. It simply yet effectively defines your company, target customers, as well as the core and values of your business. When people recognize and support your brand, it benefits your company with a competitive edge. The more recognition you receive from your customers, it will be easier to develop and increase your brand identity, as well as competitiveness with other popular brands. A strong brand can be your business’ most powerful asset, but it requires proper branding strategies and discipline to truly achieve it.

The brand identity of your restaurant plays a vital role when it comes to your social media performance. Your restaurant identity should be built around your target customers. Find out what they are interested in. Do they prefer healthy foods or are they in more into beer-and-wings kind of vibe. Consider these interests and learn how you can incorporate them in your promotional campaigns and on social media platforms.

● Capitalise Sign Advertising

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Outdoor and in-house signs and advertising on receipts, menu boards, and carryout containers help attract customers and increase brand awareness. Distribute copies of your menu and post them online. These methods can generate a significant amount of sales in your business.

● Mobile Presence and Apps

Mobile apps have become increasingly popular for small business due to ease of method and affordability. Many major brands, such as Dominos and Starbucks, developed mobile solutions that helped to their growth strategy. Also, mobile apps are an effective mobile solution, allowing customers to place their order conveniently and directly from their smartphones and reduces operating costs.

While the majority of the popular has access to the web using their mobile devices, make sure that your website is optimized for phones and tablets or these potential customers simply bounce right off your page. Take advantage of technology and invest in a fully responsive website with great design.

● Monitor and Respond to Customer Reviews

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Many restauranteurs rarely respond to online customers reviews on Google, Yelp!, and more. Reviews can be highly critical to the success of your business. One bad review can drive away potential customers. Set up a Google alert to help you monitor what your customers have to say about your business. In case of a negative review, make sure to respond in a friendly tone. Apologising and asking the reviewer to contact the restaurant directly helps redeem your situation. Always be thoughtful with your reply and show a level of customer care.

● Get Involve in the Local Community

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Hosting a charity event for a cause makes customers notice your effort to give back to the community. You do not need to host a major event — it can be as simple as donating ten percent of your day’s profit to a certain charity. Make sure to let your customers know in advance so they can dine on that day and contribute to the cause. You can also hold cooking classes, beer tasting, or anything that is informative to your customers.

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About Author

Mary Browning

Food, food, food and all about food related stories. Just love to blog about food.