The name of the game for most restaurants is two fold: Keep your returning customer-base happy and draw in new customers. Using social media is a great way to drive current and prospective customers to your restaurant. Why? How?Social media in restaurants
Here is a comprehensive guide on how to use social media to help fill tables at your restaurant, for both beginners and for those looking to brush up their social media marketing skills.

Generally, the first step in a social media marketing campaign is to do a diagnostic of your marketing efforts thus far. Consider how and to whom you are promoting your restaurant and the returns you are getting out of your current approach. If the numbers aren’t satisfactory to your liking, then consider a steady balance of the following:

  • “Thinking” like your customer and try to understand the marketing campaigns that would get them to respond favorably. By tailoring your social media campaigns to your audience and customer base, you’ll be able to better promote your restaurant, and get butts in seats!
  • Make sure that if you are using the right social media platforms to speak with your current and potential customers (i.e. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc).
  • Pictures are worth a thousand words; they also generate more engagement with online users! Make sure to showcase your food and atmosphere in the best light.
  • The tone you use to speak online must be conducive to conversation and on the same level as potential customers. Approach them with the appropriate tone and have fun with what you’re doing. Post in a friendly, inviting tone as if you were talking to a good friend.
  • You not only want to convince them to come into your restaurant, but you also want to give them the idea of a cohesive restaurant. In some cases, in order to have a cohesiveness to their social media strategy, some restaurants choose to have a popular waiter/waitress or bartender that runs social media. Some, not all, have had success with this strategy.
  • For some restaurants, the promotion of the quality and taste of their food is more important. Try instead to have your head chef run your social media outlets, as he or she will able to make posts and engaging content that revolve around the food, not just the experience.

Some additional tips:

  • A good and honest image will truly help “sell” your restaurant.
  • Stay consistent in your messaging. You can’t be all things so talk about what you’re good at or most proud of
  • Short, consistent, and stimulating descriptions on  your social media profiles that lays out your brand
  • Make sure you’re providing a caption or explanation in words, not just images: Tell your potential customers what exactly your restaurant offers, food and experience wise
  • Offer deals, sales and contests from your posts in order to drive more people into your restaurant. Nothing will ever sound better than good food and a good deal, so use it to your advantage

Social media marketing for a restaurant can be a great tool but will only work if you take action; be prepared to put in hard work to get customers in the door.

Short on time? Hit us up for how we can help. We’ll work with any budget.

The old saying that there is no such thing as bad publicity isn’t always going to help if you drop your business into a social media sinkhole. The following four steps may just help you avoid costly mistakes and mean the difference between the success and failure of your business.

Image courtesy of Mashable

Image courtesy of Mashable

Think Before You Post Anything

It’s bad enough sometimes dealing with people who comment on anything to get a reaction. If you don’t want to deal with negative comments, feedback and backlash from customers or potential customers, think before you post anything. It’s often hard sometimes to bite your tongue and remember that that the customer is always right. There is a very fine line between defending your business and insulting potential future customers who often don’t care about who’s at fault to begin with. Take some time and make sure that you’re cool, calm and collected when you respond to negative feedback.

Be Aware of the Consequences of Newsjacking

Newsjacking is when you use a national or international event and tie it to your product. There is nothing wrong with the strategy. However, you have to consider how your social media posts will look to your readers. If you are offering help or support in a legitimate way, then your posts will read that way but if your posts are tactless, then you may be walking into a social media backlash.

Create a Social Media Policy

Make sure that you have a clear social media policy in place for your business and all your employees are aware of it and understand it. This can cover you in case you have to fire someone because of potential social media breaches. Create your social media policy, implement it and make sure you have a detailed meeting with all staff so that they are aware of the policy and what your expectations are.

Always Be ‘On’

Most social media accounts can be set up to automatically alert you. If not, you can set up a notification system online like Google Alerts that will let you know if anything is being said about your business, good or bad. The more that you interact with your consumers on social media, the quicker you will be aware of any potential problems.

As always, if you find yourself reading more articles on social media than actually taking action, hit us up for free advice. We pride ourselves in social media strategy and management.

*courtesy of theworldbeast.com

*courtesy of theworldbeast.com

Моst реорlе hаvе hеаrd оf Gооglе АdWоrds; а sеrvісе thаt аllоws usеrs tо аdvеrtіsе thеіr wеbsіtеs аnd рrоduсts nехt tо Gооglе sеаrсh rеsults. Fасеbооk аlsо оffеrs а sіmіlаr sеrvісе but whу is everyone becoming so іntеrеstеd?

Fасеbооk іs nоw rеасhіng 600 mіllіоn usеrs glоbаllу. With such а hugе аudіеnсе, bеіng аblе tо аdvеrtіsе tо thіs mаrkеt ореns mаnу dооrs. Whаt аrе thе аdvаntаgеs оf аdvеrtіsіng оn Fасеbооk соmраrеd wіth Gооglе? Тhеrе аrе sеvеrаl kеу fеаturеs оf Fасеbооk thаt trumр Google Adwords:

Таrgеtеd Dеmоgrарhісs
Fасеbооk аllоws Аds tо bе tаrgеtеd аt sресіfіс grоuрs оf usеrs. Fоr us, we сrеаtе ads for clients thаt tаrgеt Fасеbооk usеrs bаsеd оn gеndеr, аgе, mаrіtаl stаtus, lосаtіоn аnd іntеrеsts. Тhеsе аrе а sеlесtіоn оf sоmе оf thе mаіn tаrgеtіng dеmоgrарhісs ВUТ thеrе аrе mоrе options like retargeting (also known as remarketing), which keeps your brand in front of bounced traffic after they leave your website.

Lоw Соst Реr Сlісk
At thе mоmеnt, thе аvеrаgе соst реr сlісk (СРС) fоr Fасеbооk Аds аrе lоw аnd whеn соmраrеd wіth thе соsts оf Gооglе АdWоrds (bу аs muсh аs а thіrd of the cost). Ѕоmе оf thіs іs dоwn tо lоw соmреtіtіоn аs thеrе аrе sіmрlу nоt аs mаnу busіnеssеs usіng Fасеbооk Аds but аlsо bесаusе Fасеbооk аrе рrісіng аds соmреtіtіvеlу. We call this your opportunity!

Lоngеr Аd Сору
Техt іs nоt аlwауs а grеаt еуе саtсhеr, but wіth Fасеbооk Аds уоu саn іnсludе mоrе tехt сору thаn Gооglе АdWоrds. Gооglе lіmіt thе numbеr оf tехt сhаrасtеrs tо 70 whеrеаs Fасеbооk оffеrs 135 сhаrасtеrs. Yоu hаvе tо wаtсh оut fоr уоur usе оf рunсtuаtіоn аnd саріtаlіsаtіоn оf wоrds thоugh аs bоth Gооglе аnd Fасеbооk hаvе strісt rulеs.

*courtesy of disrupted.com

*courtesy of disrupted.com

Fасеbооk Аds саn usе Іmаgеs
Тhе mоst fundаmеntаl vіsuаl dіffеrеnсе bеtwееn а Fасеbооk Аd аnd а Gооglе Аd, іs thе аbіlіtу tо usе іmаgеs. Іn Fасеbооk Аds, уоu аrе аllоwеd tо uрlоаd аn іmаgе оf 110рх bу 80рх (іf іt dоеsn’t fіt thеsе dіmеnsіоns, thе іmаgе іs sсаlеd). Іt prevents tехt hеаvу ads, helps make them а lоt mоrе еуе саtсhіng аnd overall will іmрrоvе thе сlісk thrоugh rаtеs.

Ѕосіаl Ехроsurе
Аn еlеmеnt thаt dоеsn’t ехіst wіthіn Gооglе АdWоrds аnd thе mајоr аdvаntаgе оf Fасеbооk Аds, іs thе sосіаl ехроsurе. Whеn а Fасеbооk usеr lіkеs thе раgе, thе nоtіfісаtіоn can subsеquеntlу shоws uр іn thеіr fееd аnd іs shаrеd wіth thеіr frіеnds, their friends’ friends, etc. Remember when marketers were obsessed with ‘going viral’ – that term is bullshit but this is what they are aiming for.

Now, don’t get us wrong: A truly effective strategy balances both these platforms, proportionally. ‘Putting all your eggs in one basket’ only works if if you account for safety, error-proof, and can convert to sales – all of which Facebook ads have been proving to be!

Here’s a great infographic from visualistan.com to check out.

Expecting public relations to be a silver bullet that solves all your business woes isn’t realistic. Public relations can be effective, but only if you set reasonable expectations and commit to PR on an ongoing basis.
Here’s a look at seven common reasons why public relations campaigns fail, along with possible antidotes:

  1. Not having a unique selling point
    Lots of clients try to promote their business before they’ve defined why customers should choose them over a competitor. But until you’ve created a strong mission statement and figured out what makes your business stand out (often called your unique selling point or USP), you probably won’t get as much return on your PR dollars as you want. Not sure what makes you unique? We help you find that little nugget that will resonate with your potential customers and help you tell that story.
  2. Not being newsworthy
    Some people assume that sending out a press release to journalists about any ‘company happenings’ is a sure-fire way to get coverage. It’s not. Most journalists don’t care that your business has finally joined Twitter, added a new VP, or created a new and improved line of widgets, because those items aren’t newsworthy. We understand what developments are potentially newsworthy and communicate those happenings to the right media outlets at the right time.
  3. Going off-message
    When a C-suite executive goes on camera or sits for an interview and gets a little too candid, the results are potentially disastrous for the brand; destroying the goodwill you’ve built up. We’ve all seen far too many examples of spokespeople making off-handed comments about political issues, celebrities and other areas unrelated to their business. We media train your key spokespeople and create talking points that help them stay on message, even when the interviewer might be fishing for some colourful (and off-message) sound bites.
  4. Overlooking PR until there’s a crisis
    Just as you can’t make up for months of poor dental hygiene with aggressive brushing the morning of a dentist’s appointment, you can’t easily clean up a communications crisis if you haven’t been building positive relationships with your community and the media over the long term. Rather than being reactive, be proactive about crafting your message and telling your story. We respond to crisises with clients as they happen, but we are most effective by helping our long-term clients avoid or minimize a crisis before they happen.
  5. Failing to follow through
    Clever campaigns on Twitter or contests on Facebook will only take you so far. If you haven’t captured your potential customers’ information and created a way to follow up with them on a regular basis with relevant content, then you’re likely to lose followers and lose momentum over time. We develop long-term online strategies for our clients to ensure that they stay on their customers’ radar and continue generating sales.
  6. Not measuring results
    Nowadays there are lots of tools that can help you monitor and quantify media mentions, engagement levels, followers and more, yet many people rely on instinct rather than hard numbers. Numbers don’t lie, and measuring results can help you better target your customers through the promotional opportunities that will get you the best return. We create analytics reports for our clients measuring engagement rates and other key metrics so that we and they understand what’s working and what isn’t.
  7. Ignoring your publicist/agency
    Your PR person needs to know what’s happening in your life as well as your business. If you contact them once a month when you decide to issue a press release or want to run a new Facebook campaign, then they’ll likely miss out on potential promotional opportunities or fail to alert you to a potential media issue. We use an extensive on-boarding process with new clients to get a 360-degree view of their business, and our most successful clients maintain open communication with us as their business evolves. We reach out on a regular basis to stay proactive.

Want to work with a boutique PR firm that can help you avoid these potential pitfalls? We can work together.

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