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Restaurant owners are probably some of the busiest workers going. That being said, some are social media savvy and others would have trouble defining what the term means.
Along with serving up the right food concoctions, restaurant owners are best served when they have a good social media plan in place to promote their eatery at no cost. Being creative is important to a successful program, so sit down and determine what you do best and promote, promote, promote.
If you have a delivery service to go with your eatery, take advantage of it to tell people about your business.
Packaged for Success
For example, pizza boxes should have your Web site and any social media page links (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) on them for advertising purposes. You can use the sites to promote upcoming deals, i.e. visit our Facebook Fan Page and receive free delivery with your next purchase of $20 or more worth of food.
Business cards should also receive a worthwhile dose of promotion of your social media sites. If you are attending any mixers, community networking events etc. pass your card around with its appropriate social media links. It is also a good idea to promote your business by making cards available to customers who can then essentially give you free promotion to their families, friends and co-workers.
While many consumers have turned their attention to the Internet when it comes to buying goods and services, there are still a large numbers of who used newspapers, magazines, television etc. to stay in touch. Be sure to promote your social media links on such sites when you advertise your goods and services.
Dishing up a Winning Web Site
When it comes to the Web site itself, make sure it is appealing to viewers so that they will have reason to come back and visit. Among the items to note:
- If you have a company blog for customers, keep it interesting and regularly updated;
- Make available discounts to your products on the site so readers are more inclined to visit;
- Cross promote your site with other worthwhile sites so you’re getting as much exposure as possible and building networking opportunities.
- Work with coupon companies so that you have an array of deals that will grab customers’ eyes;
- Allow for customer feedback on your site. Some restaurant owners shy away from this because they fear negative comments will lead to a drop in business. Censoring all negative comments and posting only positive comments will not give customers (both current and potential ones) a true read on your place. Include a disclaimer in the comments section noting any abusive language, etc. will be subject to being removed, but otherwise leave the comments intact.
With those tips behind you, what else can your eatery do to promote itself via social media and improve guest loyalty while attracting new customers?
In the event something negative does take place involving food, service etc. at your restaurant, don’t wait to react, be pro-active.
All eateries are going to have miscues at times, be it the food or service. If something goes wrong, address it right away, perhaps even through a video response. If you put the message out there apologizing on video, the short piece is likely to get picked up and circulated around, therefore leading to more exposure for your restaurant.
Another necessity is having people discussing your brand no matter what it takes.
Brand recognition is very important in today’s world, especially when there are so many companies competing for so few dollars in a tough economic climate.
Before you turn out the lights on another day’s business, make sure you served up more opportunities by being social.
Dave Thomas, who covers among other items obtaining small business loans, writes extensively for Business.com, an online resource destination for businesses of all sizes to research, find, and compare the products and services they need to run their businesses.