Restaurant Marketing 101: 9 Simple Steps for Your Restaurant

Daniel Kelly

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There are many factors that contribute to a successful restaurant. The menu, the décor, and the customer service all play an important role in creating an environment where people want to spend their time and money.

But frequently, a restaurant marketing strategy is overlooked. This strategy can include everything from social media posts to web design or even SEO optimization.

Our blog post will provide nine simple steps that you can take today to improve your restaurant's marketing strategy!

1. Work on Presentation of Dishes and Make Them Instagrammable

Your restaurant's food looks and tastes great, but why aren't you seeing people snapping photos of it on their phones for Instagram or posting to social media Great-looking dishes are more likely to get shared than plain ones.

Here's how to make any dish look social media-worthy:

  • Create a video-worthy experience
  • Make the dishes with brightly coloured and vibrant ingredients
  • Add whitespace around plating – no ingredients should touch each other
  • Place sauces below meats or vegetables rather than on top

2. Promote Menu Items That Appeal to Different Groups of Customers

More people are choosing alternative diets and lifestyles in this day and age, so as a restaurant owner, you should be aware of dietary needs and restrictions. One way to ensure that the menu appeals to a wide variety of customers is by promoting new items and specials.

People with alternative diets are always on the lookout for restaurants that can accommodate their restrictions. Be sure to promote your menu items that appeal to these potential customers.

Whether it's offering vegan or vegetarian options or menu items that are gluten-free or dairy-free, this is a great way to increase restaurant patrons.

Also, keep in mind that one person's diet restrictions don't mean another person will want it less either! Make sure that when you're creating menu dishes for alternative diets, these dishes appeal to everyone as well.

3. Add Reservation Links to Google Business

It's no secret that Google dominates online food searches. Chances are, you probably already have a Google Business account. This Google Business account shows your location, website link, operating hours, pictures, etc.

You can now add a link to your reservation system or website in a Google form field called 'reservations'. Many restaurants report an increase in online reservations of 20% when they implement this simple strategy.

4. Send Birthday Reminder Emails

Approximately 25% of people eat out on their birthdays, making it the single most important dining day of the year. Restaurants want to entice these diners because they usually have a large party and spend more money.

In other words, smart restaurants utilize these guests as the core of their marketing strategy.

First, start recording the birthday of your guests. Ask for their birthday over the phone or while they are making an online booking. Next, store or manage this information in your restaurant's customer database or CRM.

Finally, two or three weeks before their big day, send them a personalized email explaining why you're the best venue. Be sure to also include a special discount!

5. Improve Local Discovery Online (Restaurant SEO)

Did you know that the phrase 'restaurant near me' is searched 20 million times a month across the globe? Restaurant marketing plans need to address how you are going to be found online by local searchers. This topic is big for restaurants trying to dominate in restaurant SEO.

Take a good look at the following:

  • Optimized website pages for SEO
  • Accurate info on your website (NAP)
  • A website URL structure populated with location keywords
  • Google reviews
  • Updated Google Business Profile

6. Get Influencers to Post on Social Media

Do your research on influencers in your area with a large following either in your industry or in your city. Ideally, they should have over 10,000 followers and fit in or align with the brand of your restaurants.

Influencer marketing revolves around inviting influencers to eat at your restaurant, providing them with a free dining experience, and in exchange, they share their experience with their followers. When you've found some good prospects, reach out to them in a private message and see if they're interested.

7. Invest in High-Quality Social Media and Restaurant Photography

Today's restaurant marketing relies heavily on visual content. Food photography entices diners like nothing else. Investing in high-quality food photos is a must for any restaurant marketing strategy, whether on social media or PR campaigns.

The most important thing you can do is hire a professional photographer who has experience shooting restaurant cuisine. They'll know how to take the best shots of your dishes, both stationary and moving, so that they're as appetizing as possible.

Make sure all posts are geo-tagged since this will help people find you close by if they have their location services turned on for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.

8. Have an Awesome Online Menu

If people are interested in eating at your restaurant, they will likely look at your menu. In fact, menus are the most viewed page on most restaurant websites. Having a well-designed and easy-to-read online menu encourages people to make a reservation.

Use these tips:

  • Put your menu on your home page, not buried on a subpage
  • Make sure it's mobile-friendly/optimized so that people can view it on their phones
  • Use a font that people can easily read online

9. Build and Promote Your Loyal Following on Social Media

Spread the love! A simple way to make your customers feel appreciated and celebrated is by reposting their content on social media.

This is a simple and effective restaurant marketing strategy that creates a two-way relationship between you and your customers. This restaurant social media strategy is also great for boosting customer engagement!

Restaurant Marketing 101

The restaurant industry is highly competitive, which means that you have to be willing and able to do everything in your power to stand out. Our team of experts understands the challenges of running a successful business and can help make sure it becomes more than just another one-time diner experience for customers.

We've helped countless restaurants across the country increase their bottom line by investing in our restaurant marketing services, so why not get started today? From social media campaigns to web design and SEO optimization, we offer comprehensive solutions that will work for any size budget—and your particular needs as well.

If you're looking for an agency with proven results time and again, look no further and get in touch with our team today!

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Review your website & your competitors

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Covers SEO, Google Ads, Social Media & more

Provide an overview plan to hit your goals based on our review

Provide an overview plan to hit your goals based on our review

A 1-hour call with a team member to go through our findings

A 1-hour call with a team member to go through our findings