The restaurant business can get fiercely competitive, especially when neighbouring restaurants are all eyeing similar customers. Restaurant owners have to invest in marketing to stay ahead of the competition. The ultimate goal of any restaurant marketing strategy is to get the word out about your unique offerings, ambience, and services. However, you have to walk the walk.
There is undoubtedly more to marketing than just getting the word out there. You need to have a plan and follow a systematic approach. That said, this write-up outlines a few steps to a successful restaurant marketing strategy.
Have an Objective
You should be clear with your intentions before creating a marketing plan. Do you need to attract new customers, retain existing ones, or improve the average spend? Whether you have one or several objectives, you can then proceed and set clear goals for each purpose.
Set a Budget
What comes before the other; a marketing plan or a budget? While some restaurant owners think that creating a project should be done first, it is always advisable to start with a budget then a plan. Having a budget first goes a long way in saving you from unnecessary surprises. Preferably, a reasonable marketing budget for a restaurant business should be three per cent of the total revenue.
Identify Your Target Market
Prior market research will protect you from going in blind. It would help if you had an idea of who your target looks like. This means you have to pay attention to what sets you apart from your competitors and then frame your marketing strategy accordingly. It is also essential to pay attention to their demographics, and then find a way of engaging them.
Have a Value Proposition
After understanding what your customers want, you need to ensure you give them exactly that. Ideally, this means ensuring that you give your customers something that will keep them coming back. If you promise to offer delicious salads and courteous service, make sure you invest in capacity building to ensure that your employees deliver precisely that.
Train Your Staff
Training staff is usually one of the most forgotten parts of any marketing plan. As much as you might invest in marketing your business, if your guests have a not-so-good experience, the chances are that they might not come back. Excellent customer service starts with your employees. Treat them well, train them, and they will undoubtedly do justice to your customers.
Restaurant marketing should be intentional in every respect. This means that all plans should culminate into a strategy. Once you have your system in place, make sure that you bring your employees on board. As you go about with your marketing exploits, make sure you keep fine-tuning your strategy to ensure you remain on top of it.