Social Media has been growing very rapidly in the last decade and it has become a great resource for businesses to market to their target audience. People often think of social media marketing is reserved for technologically-advanced corporations with new and exciting products that are entering into the market. In fact, social media is effective for any types of companies and it has great success for the restaurant industry, both small or large.
Using social media for your restaurant requires more than just casual postings of “today’s specials,” anniversary of the restaurant, or just a link to your latest review on Yelp or the local newspaper. It takes some thinking outside of the box to create an effective social media page for your restaurant. It can be implemented easily once you have a basic plan, and an understanding of your target customers. Below are ten tips that can help you to jump start social media marketing for your restaurant business.
Tip #1: Use Different Social Media Platforms to Reach Different Customers
- Facebook: This can be used to post special promotions and events. Think about “happy hours” and teaser ads to encourage more likes to your Facebook page.
- Instagram: A highly-visual social media platform, Instagram can be used to post enjoyable photos of food, drinks and restaurant atmosphere.
- Yelp: With Yelp, you can highlight the ambiance of your restaurant, while providing some images of food and drinks.
- Foursquare: This is website and mobile app that is designed to show off reviews and specials, that will get your website more traffic.
Tip #2: Use Facebook Ads
With Facebook ads, you can target your customers based on location, preferences, age, gender and lifestyle. Take your target audience information and apply this to your Facebook ads to reach new potential customers, or to update customers on new happenings or events.
Tip #3: Post Pictures of Atmosphere and Menu Items
Posting high-quality images of your restaurant atmosphere and menu items should be done across all social media platforms, in order to inform your customers on what kind of experience to expect when they dine with you.
Tip #4: Encourage Check-Ins and Reviews
Encourage customers to “check-in” on social media. They should “check-in” and review your restaurant on platforms like Yelp and Foursquare. This helps your business build both visibility and credibility among your audience.
Tip #5: Enable Social Sharing on Your Website
Make sure that your website is mobile-friendly. It’s important to make sure your website is mobile-friendly, because many users will use their mobile devices when searching for restaurants. Then, make sure you have social share buttons on your website so your customers and target market can share your webpages to their social media if they choose to do so.
Tip #6: Offer Deals, Giveaways, & Contest
Restaurant deals, giveaways and contests give fans a reason to share your social media posts, while creating buzz among your social media followers. The more fun and entertaining you make your deals, giveaways and contests, the better results for your restaurant.
Tip #7: Show Appreciation
As a manager of restaurant social media accounts, you can show appreciation by recognizing employee work anniversaries, birthdays and more. It shows you care about your employees, staff and customers.
Tip #8: Utilize Timing of Posts
Timing is everything in social media! For restaurants on social media, try timing your social media posts to be shared around breakfast, lunch or dinner. Keep in mind that Facebook and Foursquare are also popular on weekends.
Tip #9: Be Active & Authentic
Be sure to respond to customers quickly. Answer and respond to reviews, comments and complaints as quickly as you are able. Customers enjoy and appreciate knowing there is a person behind the social media posts that cares about what you have to say, and that it’s not a computer or automated response.
Tip #10: Use Hashtags
Be sure to use applicable hashtags when posting to social media. Using hashtags will help your content be found easier on social media.
For restaurants and food service businesses, social media is an opportunity to increase online awareness and ultimately, revenue. We hope these restaurant social media tips are helpful for business owners and staff. For more help on social media, we offer digital marketing services for restaurants.