Use Digital Marketing to Create a Web Presence to Fill Your Restaurant
How we decide what and where to eat for lunch and dinner has certainly evolved over the years.
In the caveman days, the man would ask: “What should we have for dinner, Marge?”
Marge would answer, “Whatever runs by the cave.”
In the eighties, one spouse would ask: “Where can we go for dinner?”
The other would answer, “Get out the phonebook, and let your fingers do the walkin’.”
Today, in choosing which restaurant to eat at, we often rely on the Internet. We look in online directories, read reviews, check our inbox for discounts, search for online coupons, and see a number of online banners.
In other words, if you own or manage a restaurant and you’re simply relying on your restaurant sign… or that highway billboard… or word-of-mouth… or the Yellow Pages, your restaurant is sacrificing customers and revenue.
Today, we are beyond simply needing a website. You need a web presence.
Today, we are beyond simply marketing online. You need an integrated online strategy.
Today, we are beyond simply communicating to your prospects. You need to engage them.
Create a web presence
Your goal is to have prospects, customers, (and even your competition) find your restaurant when they are NOT looking for it. If you can get there, your business will grow exponentially.
So how do you get there?
- Start with a professional website that speaks to what your prospects want, is fresh and inviting, and features links to your blog and social media
- Yes, you need a blog. This is where you tell your story, share your customers’ stories, and become more than just another restaurant
- Dominate social media. Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. Remember, you’re not using these to tell your audience to try your Monday special (although an occasional mention doesn’t hurt). Social media is about engaging with your audience one on one. Master that and you’ll gain a cult following.
- Get an optimized Google Places listing. While you’re at it, make sure your restaurant is listed on every local and national directory you can find.
- Think about where your target audience hangs out. Which blogs, bulletin boards, groups, etc. Try to either advertise or communicate to them in these places.
- Encourage your patrons to write reviews on all of the top restaurant review sites. You would be surprised how much reviews contribute to the decision of where to go.
- Consider online coupon companies to bring new customers into your restaurant. Even if you the profit is low, if they love the food and service, they’ll be back. Often.
By using these digital marketing strategies to create a web presence, people will be far more likely to find and frequent your restaurant. Through multiple marketing strategies online, your prospects will believe your place is the next big thing.