Have a Twitter account – yes. Have a Facebook page – of course, yes. Be Googleable – of course. These are things that we’ve all heard about. When it comes to social media marketing of your restaurant, however, it takes more than just a one-time sign-up to which social media page is the hottest at the moment.
What truly matters is how you are using your social media presence to the full advantage of your restaurant. Here are some very important points:
- Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. These are the three most important accounts as of now – and some of the most effective too! Connect your accounts with each other to maximize exposure with minimal effort.
- Photos are (Almost) Everything. Dining is a multi-sensory experience but social media is limited only to visuals so make the most of that only available outlet to entice your followers. Take a short course on Food Photography, invest in a good camera phone, and download a ton of photo editing apps (VSCO Cam is highly recommended).
- Bloggers are your Best Friends. Blogging is one of the most effective ways to spread the word about a business but it takes a little too much time and a little too much effort; and well, let’s admit it, not everyone can write well. With the right arrangements, you can get a blogger to help you promote your brand and turn their followers into some of your own. Choose a blogger than (a) is a local, (b) specializes in food/restaurants, (c) has a large following.
- Hashtag Properly. Hashtags can be a little scary for beginners but it is your best friend. Create a good hashtag for your establishment, and create an even better hashtag for your special events. Here’s a rule: Keep It Short and Catchy! Also use popular hashtags especially during special holidays.
- Keep a certain voice. Write your social media posts in a manner that speaks about your establishment and maintain that. Your customers are surely going to recognize that sooner or later.
- Promote check-ins. The more people checks into your restaurant, the more buzz you get online.
- Be open to feedbacks. Take it this way: feedbacks will not only let you know what your customers say about your place; if they do say bad stuff, take it as a challenge to continuously improve your quality of service.
- Never underestimate the power of Facebook events. If you think Facebook events are nothing, then think again. They are actually a very good way of promoting your events without having to spend on print materials or other ads. Here are key points in promoting a Facebook event: (a) Make it public; (b) choose the right words and make it brief; (c) use a good photo. Most Facebook users are too busy to read full-length and they judge everything based on the photo so make sure you use a good and engaging one.
- Promote interaction with your followers. Ask questions, post holiday greetings, have contests and show off your menu on your social media sites. Use engaging language to get the most response and don’t forget to offer replies.
- Pay where necessary. Facebook offers ad pages and promoted posts for a fee. Use this limited ad wisely for important occasions and promotions.
- Go local. Connect with your local community pages! This is one of the easiest ways to make a good connection in your immediate environs. Don’t forget to make posts about your community too! “Patriotic” establishments always get extra points.
Social media is your best friend and best marketing tool. Make the most out ofit, pay where necessary, and never take your social media followers for granted! Not sure about doing it yourself? Find yourself a good web marketing consultant or a web PR company to do the job for you! It comes with a fee, but in the hands of the right company, it could be well worth it.