Nowadays, in this super competitive area, you can’t count on a great food to lead you directly to success (of course it helps!). To keep the house full and a good profit, it’s essential to create and implement an intelligent marketing strategy to ensure that you continue to receive new customers and that old customers keep coming!
And if restaurant marketing isn’t your specialty, we’ll explain how partnering can help you define your content marketing strategy in autopilot mode, so you focus on what you do best – preparing delicious meals!
Identify your unique selling proposition
Having a well defined concept for your restaurant can make all the difference when it comes to attracting and maintaining a loyal customer base. So, if you feel you are just another pizza place in a sea of pizzerias, identifying a unique selling proposition (USP) will do wonders to help you stand out from the crowd. To help you get started, here are some features you can consider:
Recognition: Your gourmet kitchen has won awards and/or has 5 star rating pages and pages.
Value: Your restaurant is known for offering the best at the best price.
Signature Dishes: There are one or two dishes on the menu that are completely original and/or customers are willing to make great distances to wait in long lines to try them.
Traditional cuisine: All dishes on the menu are made with family recipes; you use special techniques and truly authentic ingredients to create your dishes.
Sustainability: Only uses local and organic ingredients, as well as environmentally friendly packaging.
Environment: The decoration and ambience of your restaurant stands out (e.g. romantic, elegant, sophisticated, familiar, welcoming, etc.).
Convenience: It has a simplified logistics that allows customers to be served quickly and practically.
Identify your customer
After identifying your unique selling proposition (USP), the next step is to identify what kind of customer you will attract. So, although it is tempting to attract the masses, any marketing professional will say that if he is trying to please everyone, he is not pleasing anyone. And in this super competitive area it won’t work!
For example, if your restaurant’s USP has a very sophisticated atmosphere and handmade cocktails, we would say that it tries to attract younger and more sophisticated people on the “hipster” scale. On the other hand, it will not attract families with children, who are looking for a relaxed environment with a play area and a children’s menu where they can feel comfortable having a meal accompanied by a restless child.
Create your brand
After clearly understanding what sets you apart from your competition (your USP) and who your ideal customer is, it’s time to communicate it through a consistent brand! This will include:
Brand Personality: Identify your brand’s voice (formal and sophisticated? fun and friendly?) so you have a consistent message across all channels. This includes your social networks (more on this below), advertising copy, website copy and even the menu!
Brand Assets: Consider working with a graphic designer to create assets that are consistent and reflect the personality of your brand. This will include logo, graphics, color scheme, fonts and don’t forget some wonderful photos of your dishes to make your customers drool!
Modernize your website
Now that you have drooling pictures and beautiful graphics, get some return on investment using these assets on your website.
You can consider hiring outside help if you don’t understand web design. However, if you want to experiment, companies like Squarespace, Wix and GoDaddy specialize in fully customizable site templates made specifically for restaurants.
The vast majority of restaurant searches are done through mobile devices, so make sure your site is mobile compatible and responsive (so the design fits all devices). If in doubt, keep it simple! As long as you have the essentials – updated and easy to access menu, opening hours, contact information and location – you’re ready!
Interact on social networks
Facebook, Twitter and especially Instagram are great tools for restaurants when it comes to attracting and involving potential customers and developing the personality of your brand.
Be consistent when publishing beautiful and engaging photos of your food and restaurant and encourage your customers to do the same. Social networks are also a very effective platform to create buzz about promotions, events and other news! Don’t forget to be creative and have fun!