Owning a restaurant at present times comes with a ton of challenges. The competition is high, the market is segmented and demand is seeing a major transformation. While you need to keep up with the changing trends, it is also very important to promote your restaurant effectively to bring in steady customers.
There are hundreds of ways on how to promote a restaurant, but only a few excel in positive results.
Today, in this article we have handpicked some top ways on how you can promote your restaurant for guaranteed results. As a restaurant owner, you need to have a dynamic approach to the market. You have to be open to new possibilities. Do remember, you need to put in some real effort into these promotional methods to make them happen and bring in a huge footfall to your restaurant.
Here is a list of 10 Most Unique Ways of Promoting a Restaurant
1. Customer Loyalty Program
The best way to bring back an old customer is to offer something for his trust in you. You can choose to start a customer loyalty program. This can either be a points-based rewards system where they can redeem it after a certain limit, or they can enjoy a discount if they visit your restaurant again.
Suggested Read: How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan
Make sure your rewards are enough. You can either choose to offer a free dessert if they visit again discounts or special promos for returning customers.
2. Maintain An Updated Website
The best way to attract new customers is to have a steady online presence. A good looking website will help you build a rapport with new visitors. Make sure that you have an easy-to-navigate website with all the updated offers, a complete menu, and some specials. You can even have an extra navigation bar to offer exclusive coupons via your site.
For example, you can run offers on your site where visitors can click to buy a coupon. Also, add the option to book a table directly from your site.
3. Customer Relationship Management
You can choose to invest in a good CRM software to help you retain and manage customers. In case you are new and can’t spend a lot on some fancy software, you can create your own CRM. The best way is to offer feedback forms and take up contact details with due permission. You can then create your own list of data for monthly email and SMS offers.
You can even ask your customers to sign up for a monthly email on your website. Use it to send them special offers, discounts, and other updates.
4. Online Reservation Platforms
You can add an option to your site where customers can choose to reserve a table directly. The other best option is to tie up with a few restaurant table reservation service apps. The more the merrier. Make sure you are available on almost all the popular platforms so that customers can find you anywhere for online reservations.
These online restaurant table reservation service apps will help you bring in more customers. As an add on, customers can also browse your menu directly, view ratings, and check special offers.
5. Update The Menu On A Regular Basis
The best way to update a menu is to replace the low selling items and update the best-sellers. Understand what your customers love. For example, if most of your customers order burgers, start experimenting more with it instead of focusing on items that have the lowest order rates.
Updating the menu regularly will make customers come back to your restaurant for something more.
Have an attractive menu and keep adding new items on a regular basis.
6. Partner With Food Delivery Apps & Services
Food delivery is the next big thing happening in the food business. Not only visiting customers, now you need to build an audience in your local delivery area. Tie with your local food delivery services to offer your items online. People can order food from your restaurant directly without even visiting.
As an added advantage, a satisfied customer who ordered online would again place an order from your restaurant.
7. Social Media Marketing
Social media now plays a major role in marketing a food brand or restaurant locally. If people are talking about you on the internet, know that you have done a pretty good job with your service. Make sure you are everywhere. Be it Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, or anything.
You need to use these platforms to effectively spread the word about your food specials and restaurant.
Make sure you are posting food photos and pictures of your restaurant on a regular basis. Using hashtags to attract more followers. Also, you can run live contests and games on social media with special offers and regular updates.
8. Encourage Reviews
Word of mouth is the most effective medium of marketing. In the current age, positive reviews are the best for any service to bring new business. Encourage customers to post reviews of your restaurant and the food. Other visitors can directly read the reviews, and you don’t even have to spend a lot on marketing.
In case if the reviews are negative, make sure you handle the feedback in a kind and professional manner. Monitor all the social media activities including reviews and customer queries positively.
9. Use SEO & Keywords
You can use effective keywords to target customers in your area. You can find out what people in your area are searching for and can market your restaurant accordingly. You first need to find out what people are searching for, and you can use it to rank higher on those keywords.
Either you can use your website to make it SEO-friendly to bring in customers via searches or through paid marketing i.e Google AdWords.
If you choose to use AdWords, it will advertise your restaurant for those keywords, and you only need to pay when someone clicks on your link.
10. Coupons, Offers & Discounts
The most effective way to promote your restaurant business is to offer special coupons and discounts. When it comes to effective promotions, discounts work the best. As a restaurant business, if you can create special meals and combos every week at discounted prices, you can bring in a lot of customers.
You can even join sites like Groupon to offer special coupons. Users can either buy the coupons online or can use them to order food online with a special discount.
Even if not all, make sure you use social media and the internet effectively to promote your restaurant extensively!