Stay ahead of the competition with these tips to stay on top
Marketing your Florida Restaurant, Food Truck, Café, Coffee Shop, Bakery or other Food Service can seem like a challenge, but with the right type of marketing and utilizing the plethora of tools that are so readily available, you can take your Restaurant or Food Service Business to the next level and bring in new clients, create a buzz in your local Florida community and really grow your brand.
Follow these tips for your website and marketing to really step up your online exposure and expand your reach.
Without question, foodie photos that are high quality and can make your mouth water, are the #1 way to attract people to your restaurant. A Professional photographer will provide you with the best images, but you can also take quality pictures on your own. Study other food images from some of the top restaurants and see how the lighting, setting, and food are set up. Take different angles, views, lighting, and play around with setting so that you have a lot to choose from.
Know your audience
Understand who your restaurant’s target patrons are and use it to develop a brand identity online that speaks to them.
Set up Google alerts for your restaurant’s name to keep an eye on who’s mentioning you and searching for you online.
Use Google Analytics to monitor your online traffic and to learn the times of day and demographics of your customers.
Own your Google Maps Listing. Set up your Google My Business account and make sure your address, location, hours and business information is kept up to date and accurate.
List your business on Yelp and Yahoo Local and add as much information and images as possible. Make sure other websites that list your website have the correct information, address, hours, phone.
Guest Blog, Get Blogger Reviews and Manage Local Reviews
Guest Blog on Local sites like FloridaSmart.com or Niche Websites where you can showcase your expertise and build your online persona to drive traffic to your site.
Look for websites and blogs who will write a feature on your business and promote that on your website and social media platforms. Look for Food bloggers, local around town bloggers, and news media sites. Share the positive press on your website and social sites.
Be sure to check all the local websites often to respond to reviews and turn any negatives into positives by politely responding and apologizing, thanking them for their feedback and promising to do better in the future. Sometimes a negative review with your positive response means more then just a bunch of positive reviews.
Humanize your Florida Restaurant with stories of the owners, employees and customers. Your customers love to hear your struggles, your passions, funny stories and unique experiences.
Promote user generated content, share their images and experiences on your website and social media.
Campaigns & Promotions
Run Mobile Ads in Google Ads – people search for restaurants most often from their mobile device.
Run campaigns on Google, Facebook & Twitter with Geo Targeting to help create brand awareness in your local community.
Set up a Groupon Coupon
Host Local Florida Community Events – offer discounts and specials for local high schools, colleges, meetup groups, business groups and celebrations.
Post, monitor and engage regularly on Social Media.
Use Instagram to post only the best and most mouth watering food images & videos, people pictures and restaurant atmosphere.
You can also post relatable images, for example, if you are a seafood restaurant, add images of fish, fishing, boating, etc. Have fun with hashtags and create your own fun signature such as #pinkpickledpeppers. Make it something you can feature in your restaurant that will make it fun for your patrons to share. And jump on trending foodie hashtags to catch latest searchers.
Use Facebook to share specials, new menu items, weekly updates, human stories and of course, images and video.
Use Twitter for daily deals. Consider a food special on Twitter for each day of the week and tweet it. Twitter is also great for posting coupons and specials for your patrons. Time your tweets to hit up those hungry stomachs 30-60 minutes before breakfast/lunch/dinner.
Share fun stuff on TikTok!
Website & Apps
Your website is your window to the world. Your homepage should show professional food images that invite your visitors in. Your website is also the perfect place to post your story, employee stories, and interesting or funny facts.
Most important, your website needs to be fully functional and informative. When someone is looking at your restaurant from their phone, which for food, over 95% do, they need to be able to click on the phone number, easily see the location, hours and delivery or pickup options. And the menu needs to be easy to access and view on any type of device. If you are marketing your restaurant and people come to your webpage and can’t easily see your food menu and how to order, most often, they will leave.
Consider an online ordering system for pickup orders.
Join a delivery service that makes you more visible to the users of the various apps that bring food to your patrons. Many of these delivery services are seeking partnerships with restaurants where customers save money on the service fees drawing more clients to you. Do your research for your local area and join the one that best fits you.
If you take reservations, set up an online reservation tool that makes it easy for your patrons to schedule their own times. Add a Loyalty program to your website to encourage visitors to come back. Use a partner loyalty app to make it easy and efficient.
Offer coupons and specials for customers
Create a call to action to have customers sign up for your newsletter and receive special member only coupons.
Send Email Newsletter about once per month with specials only available for your newsletter customers.