You’re one of hundreds of restaurants in your postcode, and one of thousands in your city. You’re likely always on the look out for new ideas on how to stand out among the pack. So here’s one – a great social media marketing strategy for your restaurant.. Seems simple enough doesn’t it? There’s a lot more to social media marketing than posting something a few times a day or week. If that’s all you’re doing, keep reading, we’ve got news for you :).
1. Choosing where to be
There are an endless amount of social channels out there, but you need to know your customers to know which to choose. Where will your customer visit you? Where will they talk about you?
The best place to start is the biggest; Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Following those, you can look into Pinterest, Google+, Vine, and more niche channels.
2. Making it easy to find you
When you do create social profiles for your restaurant, make it as easy as possible to find you. If your restaurant’s name is Jimmy John’s, your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other profile names should remain as ‘Jimmy John’s’. Avoid adding unnecessary descriptives like ‘Jimmy John’s sandwich restaurant’ – if your customers like you they will remember your name and they will find you.
The ‘profile’ image for your social channels also should be very easy for customers to identify, like a logo.
3. Who’s the head chef of your social media?
Your social channels need a voice, a personality and a tone. This should reflect the personality of your restaurant. Think about getting a chef to be the voice of your social media, or a full-time staff member that socialised with customers a lot. Don’t be afraid to be different, this is one of the best and most engaging tactics you can apply to get more people visiting your social channels and restaurant.
4. Guide to posting – How, when and what
When: Think about what time people are deciding where to go for dinner. Are they doing it during work hours? Just when they arrive home from work? Or during their commute from work? You want to appear in their newsfeed at that exact time.
How & what:
Restaurants are all about food, drinks and people. How can you communicate all three with one post? Use images! Nothing gets your taste buds excited quite like an image of a fresh piece of steak, potatoes and salad, with a glass of wine beside it.
5. Facebook tricks
If you own a franchise with say a restaurant in Sydney and one in Melbourne, make use of the geo-targeting tool on Facebook. That way if you have specials or different menus, you can target the post so only people living in that city will see them.
You can also schedule your posts. If you’re really busy at certain times of the day, but still want to post images of your food or your menu, simply set a time for your post to go live.
There are a few simple things you can do daily to increase interaction:
1: Post your menu daily
2: Post photos throughout the day – of food, people, funny things that happen, your staff, your community.
3: Post offers and group deals to attract more customers
4: Don’t stop there – be creative
6. Instagram, AKA an excuse to post pictures of food
It’s as if Instagram was created for food lovers and restaurants. Tens of millions of Instagram images are posted daily, and a large number of those are of food. The message here is to incentivise people to post about your food.
Make it easy for your customers to tag your restaurant on Instagram, and offer discounts or competitions to those who do.
There are a few tricks to posting images on Instagram and getting the most interaction for them:
– Use trending hashtags. On Valentine’s Day, use the hashtag #valentinesday while posting a photo of a desert, or something themed to suit the day.
– Use niche hashtags – What is your restaurant cuisine? Where are you located? Group the two together and use #SurryHillsSushi. It’ll make it easier for your locals to find what they’re looking for.
7. Involve your team
Let everyone in your team be involved in social media. Give a little tutorial on what qualifies an appropriate post, just to be safe, and offer login details to anyone that wants to participate. More people means more ideas, and more interaction. Don’t be afraid to hand this over to other staff members.
8. The importance of good images
All the above are important, but by far the most important is the quality of your images. It’s all about the food, and the drinks at your restaurant. Customers’ intention is to eat and have a drink, so even if you do all the above perfectly, if your images don’t capture your great food, it’ll all go to waste.
The latest camera technology on smartphones is very good, so most of the time you will get away with using an iPhone or a good Samsung to capture crisp, colourful images of your food. Before you post a photo on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, ask yourself, would you pay to eat that? If the answer is no, try again!
Hopefully this guide has offered some fresh ideas about how social media marketing can be improved for your restaurant – have fun and let everyone in the team get involved!
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