All restaurant owners want their advertising and marketing to be tasteful, but it should also pack a punch, as opposed to a pinch…
Let’s address some important online trends. An enormous amount of people search for restaurant options on Google and Bing. Are you making the most of that? Did you know that well over 90 percent of diners review online menus before choosing a restaurant? That means the menu itself is a valuable marketing tool.
Online marketing offers tons of free ways to reach your customers, such as links with other sites that vacationers may access; and invites, new menu items, daily specials, upgrades and other updates can all be shared on social media platforms. Are you frequenting the best ones in the most advantageous ways?
Today, there are also virtual billboards that appear on the screen for eight seconds – much like the amount of time you have to view an actual billboard as you drive past. You pay per impression with these, so you can tailor a plan to meet your restaurant’s particularly budgetary needs. Plus, Instagram can lure prospective diners with mouthwatering food photos; and Facebook location ads can target people in your area and effectively track the results.
It’s also helpful to build your email list so that you can continually market digitally and affordably with items such as food blogs, newsletters and announcements. One way to capture emails is to entice customers to sign up for a drawing.
As a restaurant owner or manager, you also need to keep up with the times by incorporating online ordering and/or partnering with popular, established delivery services.
Additionally, the following suggestions may be old school, but they are still extremely effective marketing measures that will fill your seats…
- Offer strong incentives…maybe food wine or signature drink tastings and coupons for appealing items or discounts; and reward repeat customers with VIP invitations and special offers.
- Promote positives like the fact that you use local farmers for fresh produce.
- Take advantage of PSAs, such as the free event listings that appear on Spectrum’s Channel 13.
- And gain a local presence by participating in high profile events like New Smyrna’s cook-offs, block parties and festivals. You could also open up your restaurant to a wine walk or craft beer crawl or two.
Hungry for more? Hosting NSB can provide more information and help with professional food photos; event planning assistance; digital and print marketing materials and menus; food blogs; social media program development and facilitation; search engine optimization; designing and maintaining engaging, customer-friendly websites and so much more.