Facebook is the undisputed king of social media, bursting with 164 million users! Many people get their information about what’s going on in the world primarily from their Facebook feed.
The site’s creators are keenly aware of this and make their money selling ad space. They help companies place their ads based on highly detailed individual profiles. Facebook advertising is the opposite of broadcasting.
Instead of telling your story to everyone, you can easily target your posts. Spend your dollars reaching a specific subgroup of people most likely to be interested in your restaurant, rather than those who won’t.
The goal of creating a restaurant marketing strategy for Facebook is to communicate your brand message. Your restaurant’s brand is the collection of thoughts, feelings, and experiences that come to mind when people think of your restaurant.
Facebook marketing gives you a chance to strengthen these hopefully positive associations, as well as create new ones. Because your audience on Facebook is so targeted, communicating your brand message through boosted posts on Facebook can be done efficiently and affordably.
This article assumes that you already know your target market and you have a reasonable sense of the brand message you want to communicate.
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The “Do’s-and-Don’ts” To Marketing Your Restaurant On Facebook:
Do Reply to Every Mention
When your followers care enough to tag your restaurant in a post you should always reply with a message that makes them feel special and recognizes their effort. Hopefully this will encourage them to keep doing it.
If people tag themselves at your location it means they care and are proud of their choice to dine there. Showing off your food is even better!
Don’t Delete Bad Reviews
Although it’s tempting to delete and ignore bad reviews it’s better to confront them with kindness. Taking ownership of a difficult situation shows integrity. Most importantly, it gives you a chance to make it up to an unhappy customer.
Others who visit your page will see that you care about making things right. No one expects everything in life to be perfect, but we do expect problems to be handled with professionalism.
Do Post ALL The Time
Every post and reply that you write on Facebook is an opportunity for customer engagement and restaurant brand-building. A good mix of paid post boosting and organic reply-traffic will take time and effort.
It’s also a matter of keeping your name and logo in the forefront of people’s consciousness. If someone is seeing your restaurant’s name come across their screen three times or more a day, you’d better believe it’s going to affect their behavior the next time they are hungry!
Don’t Only Post About Promotions
To fuel a successful Facebook marketing strategy, not everything you post should be a new promotion. Find other topics to post, to provide your Facebook followers with interesting content. Just make sure that whatever you post reinforces your brand’s message.
Things you might consider sharing are recipes, how-to articles, stories about your local community, music that you like, tourist information or inspirational stories.
Remember that to get shares, (and links back to your page) you need to post content your followers will find value in. By providing valuable content they will be more likely to share your posts with their friends and family.
Read More: Choosing a Restaurant Business Structure
Do Promote Your Restaurant
It might be tempting to only post about your restaurant specials. You should of course post your upcoming specials but there are a lot of other ways to promote your restaurant with Facebook.
Post great photos of your food. Post stories behind your dishes, like how it was inspired and how your ingredients are locally sourced. Post personal profiles of your extraordinary staff and photos from the community events that you host.
There are endless opportunities to share something interesting and make it about your restaurant. Share your joy with your followers and let them see behind the scenes. This increases the personal intimacy, building a deeper sense of customer loyalty.
Don’t Give Up!
Building your Facebook following is going to take some time. Just keep at it. Exponential growth works over the long run. That’s why gaining 200 followers can seem to take a long time to build but then become 2000 followers overnight.
Don’t worry so much about the number of followers you have. Your posts will still be seen by the people you want, when you pay a few bucks to “boost” it. Focus on consistent posting of interesting content that reinforces your brand message.
Do Consider Getting Help
Because building your restaurant’s Facebook presence does take time, planning and consistency, consider finding someone to help you manage your social media marketing. This could be a direct-hire employee or an outside marketing firm.
Although it is a part time job you want to be sure they’re taking it seriously. It’s better to choose a social media marketing manager with experience who is already managing other accounts.
These tips for online marketing using Facebook is part of a series of articles on restaurant marketing techniques provided for free by Rezku.
Rezku is a restaurant management systems developer focused on making the lives of restaurant owners better. We do this through affordable, accessible technology that helps you do more of what you love.