10 Creative Restaurant Marketing Ideas: How to Effectively Market Your Restaurant
We know how difficult it can be to market a business. With online marketing tactics like social media, email marketing, SEO, and paid ads gaining popularity, getting lost when embarking on your digital marketing journey is easy. That’s why agencies like Frozen Fire exist. Not only do we want to give you creative restaurant marketing ideas that work, but we also want you to look good in the process.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to market your restaurant successfully, we want you to think about your brand’s identity. Are you a brand that values extravagance and opulence? Are you a brand with a mission of providing customers with healthy and fresh ingredients? Or maybe, you are a brand that emphasizes humor, cleverness, and intellectual acuity. Whatever your brand’s identity, tone and message are, you need a digital marketing strategy that reflects exactly who you are!
1. Step Up Your Socials: Social Media Marketing
Social media is one of the most important marketing strategies in today’s environment. Whether you’re checking Instagram for aesthetic food shots or going to Yelp to gauge how the public majority feels, social media is everything in the restaurant industry. Not only will people go to your profile for general business inquiries like hours, locations, menu, and specials, but people will go to your page to find the general tone and message of your brand. The most popular social media apps for restaurants will be Instagram and Facebook, but popular media apps like Twitter, TikTok, Pinterest, and YouTube all have their respective place. In terms of restaurant marketing ideas on social media, have fun with it! This is your chance to show people who you are in a modern and engaging way.
2. Set Up and Optimize Google My Business
What do you typically do first when considering where to go to dinner tonight? Like most people, you probably will head over to Google. Google is a great way to find new restaurants that may have the perfect dish made just for you! However, gaining customers through Google My Business requires a strategy that most businesses overlook. Google My Business is crucial for users to get information on hours, contact information, location (Google Maps), updated menus, service options, etc. A user will have a comprehensive look at your restaurant and what you’re all about within seconds. However, setting up your Google My Business might be the easiest part. It would help if you learned how to optimize it successfully. Make sure you have up-to-date photos that showcase your restaurant in the best light. Also, make sure all the information that is listed is correct.
3. Invest in SEO
Search Engine Optimization can sound pretty scary when you don’t know how it works. In theory, Google tracks specific keywords that you use within your website copy. It can be tricky to find the exact keywords you need for your website to succeed. Just because you think you have the finest cheeseburger in the nation doesn’t mean everyone else does. Take a look at your Google, Yelp, and OpenTable reviews. This will give you a deeper look into what people are already saying about your food. They may be using words like “American cuisine,” “patio seating” or “happy hour.” These are things that you will want to incorporate into your website copy. The goal of SEO is to drive traffic directly to your website.
Pro tip: Google will prioritize websites that are both desktop and mobile-friendly!
4. Prioritize Food Photography
The proclaimed Instagram “foodies” are real, and they can be utilized by your restaurant’s marketing to drive sales. These days, food content such as images, videos, and Reels take over social media. Users are eating with their eyes more than their stomachs. If users go to your website or social media page and nothing catches their eye, they will find somewhere else for those Instagram-worthy meals. Always make sure your photos are appetizing and pleasant to look at. A picture is worth a thousand words… or, in this case, bites.
5. Create and Send Out Monthly Email Newsletters
Email marketing is an affordable, engaging way to stay connected with your audience. Not only are you reaching out to customers in real-time, but email has been a primary form of communication for decades. You can provide users with discounts, special offers, and the inside scoop on upcoming events. Who doesn’t like to feel included?
6. Respond to All Reviews
Of course, no one wants to read a bad review about their business, but it is essential to reply to them. When you respond to reviews, you demonstrate to people that you care about what they have to say. People that read your reviews are actively watching to see how you reply. Make sure each response is thought out and doesn’t sound too robotic. There is nothing worse than a personal response that doesn’t sound personal.
7. Actively Engage with Social Media Users
Engagement can drive results! While social media is a fun way to raise brand awareness, make sure you engage with comments, stories, posts, shares, and likes. You want people to spread the word about your restaurant. The more you engage with your consumers, the more they will engage with your page!
8. Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing has become one of the most lucrative restaurant marketing ideas of 2022. The basis is simple, a person you follow or like goes to a restaurant and promotes the food, drinks, and location. That puts your brand in a positive light, raises awareness, and inevitably brings in the audience that follows that influencer. According to an Influencer Marketing Hub statistic, businesses that use influencer marketing earn $18 for every dollar invested. A positive recommendation can go a long way!
9. Drive the Use of Restaurant Reservation Apps
Make life better for your customers, and allow them to book reservations through apps like OpenTable, Yelp, and Resy. These online reservation apps have loyal customers that return to the app frequently. Reservations apps are an all-in-one service that allows customers to search for dining places in the area and reserve a table within minutes.
10. Create a Customer Loyalty Program
One of the main goals of any business is to attract new customers while keeping existing customers. A significant advantage of a customer loyalty program is that it encourages customers to make repeat visits to your restaurant. Customer loyalty programs are a great way to provide incentives, useful information, benefits, and special offers to customers who are already loyal to your brand!
We know this may seem like a ton of information, but these restaurant marketing ideas will boost your online presence and encourage customers to walk right through those doors. If you feel like this might be too much for you to handle on your own, reach out to Frozen Fire to come in and boost your restaurant’s digital presence! Contact us today to get started!