New restaurants may have the best food or the most innovative dining experiences, but if no one knows about them then all of that is wasted. Marketing is crucial for finding your first customers, building a loyal customer base and keeping up with competitors – so how do you do it?
Build a website
A website that works well and has a professional aesthetic is an important part of getting found for a new restaurant. Your website should show potential customers what’s on offer, provide all the information customers might need to show up at your door and also offer functionality to make that happen, such as making bookings.
Search engine optimisation is a key part of making sure that your website appears in the right places in the appropriate search results.
You’ll need to start by conducting keyword research into what people are likely to be searching for in your area. You’ll need to use the Google tools for this, and then build the content on your website around these target keywords.
Another one of the most important elements to SEO is ensuring that your site is full of up to date, interesting and relevant content, but there are many more elements that go towards an effective SEO strategy. Unless you have the budget to hire a full time digital marketer to work for you, you might be better off working with an agency who can handle it for you.
Reach out to food bloggers
Food bloggers offer an easy way to reach a captive audience who are already looking for great food recommendations. Inviting a food blogger to dinner can result in reviews and images that can encourage others to visit, as well as providing a sharable piece of content that promotes your business for free.
Monitor review sites and engage on social media
The idea is to identify where customers are talking about your business and jump in. Avoid using irritating marketing speak and instead have genuine conversations, reveal inside information and correct inaccuracies.
Use online reservation tools
Whether you have online booking functionality in your website or not, using other online apps expands your reach and makes it easier for more customers to find you and book with you in more places online.
Competitions are a great way to attract attention and create customer loyalty. Just make sure that they are shareable online so they can achieve maximum reach.