Article

Steven Tulman
Steven Tulman 7 August 2015

Top 10 Restaurant Marketing Tips

Top 10 marketing tips for restaurants that will help you in the right direction.

Owning and running a successful business, let alone a restaurant or bar, requires a specific set of skills and knowledge. As well as being able to develop an inviting environment, hire the right staff and source the best ingredients, you must be able to market your business successfully to your customer segment. Here are 10 restaurant marketing tips to point you in the right direction.


1. Stay Current

Keeping up to date on current statistics, trends, facts, and figures is essential. Knowing what is happening in the restaurant sector will help you know whether changes need to be made to your marketing plan and whether you are positioned correctly for your customer sector.


2. Utilize Your Website

No business should underestimate the importance of the Internet, but having a website is only the beginning; your site also has to be up to date and user-friendly. With the increasing number of restaurant goers searching for dining option on the Internet through mobile devices, your site needs to be mobile-friendly. If your website is not optimized for all devices mobile, you will lose users and therefore miss out on great new customers.


3.Monitor Review Sites

It is often said that your reputation precedes you, and this has never been more true than with online reviews. These reviews reflect your customer’s experiences and need to be acknowledged. Thank visitors for positive reviews and respond promptly to negative ones. It is important to respond in a respectful manner that shows you take their concerns seriously. To help increase the chances of website visitors converting to new customers, be sure you post the positive reviews to your website for all to see how great you are.


4. Regularly Update Your Social Media

Comments made on social media can reach millions in a moment. Not only do you need to have a social media presence, but you need to be active on the platforms you have chosen. Spreading yourself across every possible platform is extremely time-consuming and leads to an inconsistent presence on any of them. Choose two or three platforms that are frequented by your customer segment and update them regularly with upcoming events, great reviews that your restaurant receives, specials and more.


5. Offer Online Reservations

Convenience is the name of the game when trying to attract and retain customers. The easier you make it for customers to make reservations, the more likely they are to book a table at your restaurant or bar. Potential customers need to be able to successfully book through any device they are using, including mobile devices. Ensure that your online booking service is also used by your staff when the take reservations by phone or in-person so that you don’t double book tables.


6. Upsell Customers While They’re In Your Restaurant

If you have extra space in your restaurant, use it to promote events, menu items, specials, and private functions. Use existing your TV’s and screens to enhance their dining experience and earn extra revenue by turning part of those screens into digital signs. In today’s digital world you can choose a portion of your screen to show live TV and another portion for promotional material. With digital signage and marketing automation tools like UNOapp, you can even preselect specific promotions to appear on the screen every time your local sports team scores a goal. What better time to promote your food and drinks to people than when they’re in your establishment with their eyes glued to the screen?


7. Promote Your Delivery And Take-Out Options

If you do not already offer these services, it is worth considering; it is an additional revenue stream that shouldn’t be ignored. You need to have online, text, telephone, and in-person services working in perfect harmony and ensure that food is delivered on time, hot and at the expected quality. Consider discounts for large orders, specific groups or order days. Promote your delivery and take-out menus online and in-store through digital signage to let all of your customers know the options that they have.


8. Make Wi-Fi Available

People want to be able to stay connected, even when enjoying a meal. Providing free Wi-Fi is one way to meet this growing need. If you are going to offer this service, you need to ensure that your Wi-Fi connection is secure as well as easy to access. Password protect the connection and supply the password to the customer by adding it to the in-house menus or through the cashier. You could even setup your Wi-Fi so that your customers have an easy registration page where they provide you with their emails and names so that you can send them promotions inviting them back into your restaurant again. This can greatly increase your retention rate and help keep your seats full.


9. Appeal To The Health Conscious

Consumers are becoming more aware of the food they eat and the ingredients that go into that food. A recent poll by the National Restaurant Association showed that 73% of consumers try to choose healthy options when going out to eat. Take this into consideration by offering healthy options, or by sourcing fresh, locally sourced produce. Remember to add the healthy information to your menus, website, print advertising, and social media feeds. If you don’t promote it, people won’t know about it.


10. Create And Implement A Customer Loyalty Program

Encourage repeat visits by rewarding customers for their continued business. Loyalty programs are as easy to implement as providing a card that is stamped on each visit. You can also use digital swipe cards that provide you with details about the customer. This approach helps you tailor rewards and promotions to individual customers. Rewards need to be achievable for your customers and workable for you. Use points that can be spent only at your establishment or set up a tiered system where points can be spent, or saved for larger rewards. 


Running a restaurant or bar, isn’t easy. The competition is fierce and advertising isn’t as straightforward as it used to be when print ruled the world. To succeed in today’s digital world, you need to have the right marketing strategy and the right tools to support your strategy. Doing these 10 things right will help you grow your business by attracting new customers and keeping your existing customers coming back more often.


For more information about how you can market your business more effectively please reach out to me by email at steve@unoapp.com and I’ll be happy to help.

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