Social Media for Restaurants: Do I Really Need Social Media for my Restaurant?
If you are one of those people who think that Social Media is not for your restaurant or you just don’t care about Social Media, let me give you some reasons why you may be wrong. The restaurant industry is highly competitive and customer traffic is one of the things local restaurants compete for. Nowadays, restaurant owners need to be ready to engage with existing and potential customers on their terms. Social media makes it easy for both parties to connect. It doesn’t mean you need to be present on every Social Media platform. In fact, our experience shows that Restaurant’s top options are Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instragram and Yelp. If you don’t feel comfortable about social media, we recommend starting out with just 1 social media channel. Let’s discuss some of the benefits you can get when using these platforms:
1. Build your Community
Using Social Media, restaurateurs can reach their customers directly and build relationships with them. Continuous sharing of new and relevant info about your restaurant, your team, and local community helps to increase brand awareness. Keep your audience engaged by accepting direct messages, responding to comments, mentions and tags, rewarding when someone shares your posts. Show your customers that you care: ask them about their experience, collect their feedbacks and provide more reasons to come back. We all want to belong to a community of others who value what we value and listen to our opinion, so by doing the things suggested above, you incline people stick around for more.
2. Learn your Target Audience
Social Media allows you to gather insights, so you can learn more about your customers’ personal details, preferences, dining habits etc. Learn to understand different groups within your social community, create messages accordingly for a better result. Understanding your audience better enables restaurants to shape unique experiences for their customers and make them come again.
3. Geo-target your Audience
Geo-targeting helps you to target people based on their location. This helps to significantly increase the value of your ads. There are different ways for you to segment your target audience like Country, State, Zip Code, Age, Gender and even Interests. You can play with some of these options and see what works best for your concept.
4. Get More Sales
People are far more likely to visit your establishment if they can get a basic idea about your brand online. Social Media is a really great way of creating more buzz around your restaurant. People share their experiences with friends, relatives, coworkers, and once you have many followers, they start doing marketing for you. Enhance your strategy by sharing your daily specials with mouthwatering pictures, time your posts the right way and you’ll see what difference it can make to your bottom line.
5. Respond Immediately
Restaurants can effectively use Social Media to safeguard their online reputation. You can quickly respond to customer comments and reviews, immediately address complaints and compensate customers when necessary.
6. Brand Advocacy
Another reason why restaurants should use Social Media is to produce brand advocates. You can encourage your fans to share their experiences with your restaurant, so that they feel their importance and become loyal to your brand. It’s good to develop a strong relationship with your brand advocates, as this helps to spread positive social buzz about your restaurant, bring in more traffic and ultimately build reputation for the brand.
7. Enhance customer experience
Remember to sell not only food but customer experiences as well. Social Media helps you to make these experiences even better. Once customers start posting pictures of your dishes or share their opinions about your establishment, you will start to understand your weaknesses and strengths and adjust your strategies accordingly.
8. Social Media is free
Traditional ways of marketing and advertising have always been expensive, making it more difficult for independent restaurants to reach potential customers. Nowadays, any restaurant can reach their customers by developing an ongoing relationship with them through Social Media. You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on advertising and you can invest your money in enhancing customer experiences, so that people want to share them and come back again and again.
I hope you’ve learned a little bit more about Social Media and now understand that in the restaurant industry you cannot ignore the power that Social Media posses. You customers are there and are checking their updates a few times a day. Make sure you use this incredible opportunity to connect with them and get noticed in your community.
Want to know more about how Social Media can increase your sales? Read about Proven and No-Cost Ways to Attract More Customers To Your Restaurant Through Social Media.