Now that the digital business forms a substantial part of the total sales made from the hospitality business, it is imperative to join each marketing strategy that appears in the virtual world.
There are many possibilities that the restaurant has when it comes to publicizing its establishment, however, only some of the solutions are efficient. In the following article, we are going to break down the three marketing strategies that worked best in 2019, and that will foreseeably continue to have an important place in the range of advertising and promotional options for restaurateurs in 2020 and years to come.
1.- Assign an employee the work of public relations through the networks
Not all restaurants can afford to have an employee who is exclusively dedicated to managing the local’s online presence. This possibility is usually limited to large organized catering operations.
However, this does not mean that the little restorer should give up his efforts. There is always the alternative of assigning these attributions to one of the business’s employees, who, in addition to attending the profiles on social networks, the reviews published in aggregators, and the queries that arrive by telematic means, will also dedicate themselves to other more traditional on-site tasks.
Concentrating all the online efforts in a single person instead of distributing the tasks among several components of the restaurant’s human team allows the worker assigned to the communications to have a better overview, obtain experience, and put this asset in value in a more fruitful way.
According to the 2019 Restaurant Success Report written by Toast and in which more than 1,000 establishments in the sector participated, 34% of managers place their trust in a single worker when it comes to launching offers online, establishing relationships with Internet users, and keep corporate profiles on the network updated.
2.- Social networks as a showcase display to the world
Social media is not just a place to browse the lives of others and argue with people we don’t even know about petty matters. The restaurant can use these platforms for its benefit.
Maintaining a robust online presence on platforms such as Google My Business, Facebook and Instagram are of the utmost importance if you want to win in the Internet race to attract customers. It is also worth exploring other alternatives; Promotions have worked very well in recent years, and some businesses have their kingdom in WhatsApp. Inventiveness and decisiveness when it comes to reaching customers often pay off.
Based on the aforementioned Toast study, the following conclusions are drawn:
- Two-thirds of the restaurateurs consulted are advertisers on social networks.
- The number of restaurants that have an Instagram profile almost tripled between 2018 and 2019. Currently, 68% of those surveyed have an account on the social network.
- 91% of the participating restaurants have a profile on Facebook.
With these data, it is clear that the importance of social networks as a marketing strategy should not be undermined today. Society demands that the companies with which they interact have an online presence, and those businesses that maintain their brand image on the internet are the ones that, sooner or later, end up triumphing among the masses.
3.- Manage the restaurant’s online reputation
The times in which the consumer consulted friends or family to recommend a new place to eat have passed. This is not to say that word of mouth advertising has perished. Quite the contrary! Its power has multiplied to such an extent that the restaurant must be very careful with negative publicity. Despite the popular saying, not all advertising is good …
When a customer who does not know our establishment searches on the internet which restaurants are in his area, which places are in fashion, or which businesses offer the products he wants, he will also do additional searches to find out if the user experience that he can obtain in these establishments is Aligns with your expectations.
To do this, you will use one of the online opinion aggregators that can be found on the internet. This is usually the most common answer. On other occasions, the potential client decides to go through the social networks of the business, to see what are the perceptions that the public has about the company in question.
All of these data influence your ultimate decision. The initial impression counts less and less, and for this reason, restaurants use specialized marketing techniques to improve the feeling they generate on the internet.
These techniques can range from creating a brand image in line with your consumers to reward systems through mobile apps, which allow you to reward customers who leave reviews with advantages (discounts on their next drink, free items, etc.).
as stated by to scientific studies on consumer psychology, having a strong and exemplary presence in one of the most important review aggregators ( Google My Business, ElTenedor, or TripAdvisor, for example) can generate an increase in sales of between 5 and 1 9 percent of total business volume. A treat that no restaurateur can pass up.
Hence, the good practice manual must be followed to keep our reviews under control:
- Never lose your papers
- In case of an incident, try to solve the problem before the client leaves the premises
- Always reply to negative reviews and thank positive ones
- Maintain contact with review aggregator moderation teams to handle false and unfair reviews
- Involve the entire team in online reputation management
These three fronts of digital marketing have allowed restaurants to capitalize on the online audience. In 2020 there is still time to join these trends and start generating additional income thanks to the intelligent use of digital environments.