The competition amongst restaurants is fierce. Your food may be delicious, the service impeccable and there might be an ambience to rival even the most luxurious of places. But if you don’t market your business well, then how can potential customers ever know this?
As much as word of mouth can help bring in customers, it is not enough to ensure success. So this summer, why not try out these 10 marketing tips and watch as the waiting list for a table turns from minutes to weeks?
- Keep it traditional with leaflets and flyers
Don’t underestimate the power of leaflets and flyers. As important as it is to have an online presence, and as popular as social media is these days, not everyone uses it! By printing off flyers and leaflets at Helloprint (that can include links back to your website and social media), they can then be posted through all doors in the local area.
- Social Media
Social media can get your messages out to a wide audience and won’t cost you a penny. On Twitter make use of hashtags, both popular existing ones and ones you have created. This is a great way to get people talking whilst always linking back to your restaurant. It can also be a place to communicate with your customers, answering queries and comments.
- Foodie Photos
Use your social media account to show people how mouth-wateringly delicious your food looks. Taking photos of food has become increasingly popular with the rise in social media. Instagram is particularly good for this, but taking a good food photo can be harder than it looks, so before you get snapping search the web for some handy tips!
- Summer Offers
Think outside the box, what can you do to your menu to stand out? You could create a summer specials menu to accompany your normal menu. Then think about what you can offer! Everyone loves to receive something for free. What could be better on a hot summer’s evening than a jug of Pimm’s free with two main meals, perhaps?
- Give your website a facelift
Your website will say a lot about your restaurant. If potential customers come to your site you want them to be able to get all the information they require. Include an up-to-date menu, contact details and a map, reviews, links to your social media and blogs and alongside all the important information include those mouth-watering photos.
- Enlist local food bloggers
Bloggers opinions are extremely valued and their following is extremely high. So, offer those foodies a meal at your restaurant in return for social media/blog post mentions.
- Start your own Blog
Starting your own blog is a great way to engage with your customers. It will help you to show it to people as more than just a place they meet friends for a meal. Here you should share stories, announcements and news, recipes, introduce the staff, run competitions – anything your customers may find of interest.
- Take part in local markets, events, fairs
Offering people the opportunity to sample your food away from the restaurant will let them taste how delicious it is and make them desperate to come back for more! It is also an opportunity to hand out those flyers and leaflets.
- Capture e-mails and then send out newsletters
Perhaps set up a competition on social media that will not only get people talking about your restaurant, but will also provide you with a complete database of e-mails. Then send out a newsletter than can inform people of any updates or news. This is also a great way to grow your followers, and bring in more customers – if the prize is a meal at the restaurant they can then share the experience with their followers.
- Hold themed nights!
Themed nights are a perfect way to bring in custom. How about a Caribbean one for the summer months? From decorations to food and music, it will not only be a fun night but will also produce great photos for Instagram and content for the blog!