Running a restaurant is tricky enough without having to worry about the right way to market your venture online.
In fact, restaurants rank among the 10 most risky business ventures in a recent survey. So, why not take advantage of the Internet and get some free word-of-mouth marketing?
Review Platforms For Restaurants
The following represent some of the best and fastest ways to get exposure on the Internet. Some you may already know, but the key is to actually follow through and take advantage of them. This also is an area where you might want to hire experts in internet and social media marketing to create content and manage your presence online
No surprise here. This social media site has more than 1.7 billion monthly users and continues to grow. People are far more likely to share links for, say, menus and reviews on Facebook. You can take action by creating a Facebook page about your business, allowing you to communicate directly to customers and even allow people to make reservations through Facebook. This is where everyone is, you need to be there, too.
Here’s another area where taking small steps can lead to big results. Twitter makes the perfect platform for letting customers know about special deals, menu changes, big events and any other news about your business. And you control the delivery of that news and can reach thousands in seconds.
Here’s one you don’t control, but you really need. Yelp has become an extremely powerful website. Reviews of restaurants made by customers are listed, and they have a lot of influence on those trying to decide on where to eat. It’s important for you to make sure all the information about your restaurant is up to date – location, phone, hours of operation, etc. Also be sure to thank the reviewers who praise your restaurant. More importantly, make sure to address the concerns of those who write negative reviews. You want to let people know you are paying attention and willing to address customer concerns.
Everyone knows Google+ is nowhere near as popular as Facebook. However, you must create a business page on Google+. First, it creates a location for you on Google Maps, which is very important as so many people search there for a place to eat. Second, it increases your ranking on Google searches.
It comes down to this with Groupon. If you work with them, you must focus on getting return customers. Because the truth is, Groupon offers such deep discounts that you will likely lose money working with them. But if you can create some loyal customers by initially offering them a great discount through Groupon, then it’s worth it.
Creating a website has never been easier, and these days you must have one of your own. Think of it as a replacement for all the advertising in print publications that restaurants used to have to do. Here you can offer great content about your restaurant, all your contact and menu information and any news you wish to share with customers. It’s a great way to reach potential customers searching for information and a great way to keep loyal customers informed.
Consider some or all of these options for marketing your restaurant on the Internet. Remember that all of this works better if done in tandem, so it’s worthwhile to consider hiring experts to help you handle all of these different sites.