Restaurant brands need to take strong hold of their social media presence. The space allows for direct, one-on-one connections to customers. Getting people to talk about your brand in social spaces can make a dramatic impact on business. Unfortunately, lack of planning, inactivity, and poor engagement damage the presence of many brands and result in poor results.
Here’s a look at ways restaurant brands can better leverage social media to gain exposure.
Keep Customers in the Loop – Do you have a new dish on the menu, or added a new beer to the mix? Have a new promotion, special, or event coming up? Let your most loyal customers know what’s going on as it happens. If your restaurant is busy and reservations are tough, announce cancellations on social media.
Post Pictures – Your food is your signature product, so why not share what your dishes look like and display what you have to offer? This strategy works well on sites like Pinterest and Instagram.
Highlight Customers – Many of your customers already talk to each other, so highlight them on social media to create community and build loyalty. Create campaigns for customers of the month or year.
Say Thank You – What’s easier than thanking your customers in the digital space, just as you do in person? Create different campaigns to say thank you to groups like teachers or military personnel.
Utilize Video Content – You’re an expert in your field, so leverage your brand presence to create original content to share via social media. Video is a mandatory medium, so create educational cooking videos to educate and connect with your customers. Create a library of your video content with a YouTube channel.
Mobility – If your restaurant is a food truck or even just has frequent off-site events, you can keep customers in the loop by posting your next location or daily menu items on Facebook or Twitter.
Exclusive Offers – Leverage social media like Foursquare to create special offers for first-time customers, or special offers available only online with passcodes. Integrate your various media channels to spread the word.
Create Conversation – Create regular, consistent conversations with customers by answering questions or complaints, or just responding when they mention your brand. Utilize hashtags to group the conversations. Compel people to participate with contests and promotions. Create daily, weekly, and monthly conversation calendars.
Promotions – The number of contents and promotions available via social media is only limited by your imagination. One of the easiest ways is to utilize your online customers. One New York City restaurant encouraged customers to take photos of their food and send it out with a hashtag for exposure and brand awareness. Offer specials and discounts for participation.