How Can Restaurant Owners Maintain A Healthy Customer Base?
In recent years, attracting and retaining customers in the food service industry has become highly competitive. Mere word-of-mouth, delicious food and high quality food equipment is not enough to maintain a stable and strong customer base in today’s digital age. To stay on par on with their competitors, it is crucial for restaurant owners and commercial caterers to have a robust online marketing strategy.
Let us look at a few of the best ways to achieve this.
Leverage on Social Media
Regardless of if you are running a physical restaurant, a pop-up food truck or a commercial catering business that provides huge quantities of food for large-scale office parties or hospital kitchens, the most important tool you can use to market your business is social media. The great thing about social media is that you can use it without having to spend any money at all. Free social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Yelp are easily available at your fingertips. You can use them to post pictures of your mouth-watering restaurant food, photos of your best catered events like weddings, birthdays and holiday parties or even pictures of your well-designed refrigeration systems.
You can even enlist the help of famous online bloggers who can use their large following to attract hundreds of restaurant customer base to your establishment, for free! All you need to do is to send food and event bloggers an invitation to one of your upcoming events.
Your Customers can Help You
In addition to sharing pictures of your food and business on your company’s social media sites, you can get your customers to help you promote your business. Encouraging your customers to post flattering photos or complimentary testimonials about your business can increase the fame of your business among online communities. It is important to request that your customers hashtag your company’s social media accounts when they post. You will then be able to repost their photos or reviews on your company’s social media pages. Not only will you be able to generate more good publicity for your business, acknowledging the posts of your customers will also help in building a loyal restaurant customer base.
On top of responding to good reviews, you should also address bad reviews by customers. Doing so not only placates unhappy customers, it will also show that you are concerned about customer experience.
Increase your Website Presence
Another marketing technique is to increase your website presence through search engine optimization. This can be done by using specific keywords in the website that appeal to your audience. Such keywords will give you quality placement above your competitors in the results of search engines like Google. For example, if you manage a catering business is, having key phrases like “commercial catering” in the landing page of your website will cause search engines to list your website higher when someone searches for that term.
Keeping in mind the competitiveness of today’s food industry, anything that can give your business an edge over your competitors is worth looking into. Mastering online marketing will provide your business with the robust online presence it needs to survive and grow.