The Complete Guide to Social Media for Restaurants & Bars

Ah, Restaurants and bars. The best places to go for a night out with your friends, a loved one, or to drown out a bad day with some delicious food. Either way, food has become so embedded within social media culture that the amount of #food #drink related hashtags has reached a resounding 200 million posts in 2018 alone. With that, considering that 88% of people are influenced by online reviews in regards to the food business, speaks volumes as to why any restaurant owner should have a well set up social media platform, especially in the digital age we live in today.

The purpose of this post is to inform you in regards to the following,

-Why any Restaurant owner needs to be on social media
-How to set up your online Presence
-How to create posts
-Overall effectiveness

Without further adieu, let us begin.

Why any Restaurant Owner Needs to be on Social Media

As mentioned previously, in this day and age online reviews and presence matter a lot to consumers. Food establishments such as Starbucks have been able to successfully bring in new customers by merely promoting challenges, and encouraging retweets, hashtags and tagging across a variety of social media platforms. According to recent facts, nearly 75% of people purchased a product because they saw it on social media. Of that percentage, 60.7% need to see a post 2-4 times from the company before making a purchase. If anything, restaurant owners need to work twice as hard towards promoting their specials, discounts and seasonal meals if they hope to attract and retain a good customer base.

With social media, restaurants can advertise and promote their newest menu items and provide online vouchers for consumers. By doing this not only does it encourage customers to use the coupon and walk into the store, but more importantly, it allows store owners to track how many customers are visiting the restaurant from viewing online social media promotions. This provides an opportunity to gather more leads and can give great insight for a business owner in regards to figuring out, which menu items are favored over others. Essentially, social media helps with brand image, customer outreach, providing incentives, and collecting data.

How to Setup Your Online Presence

Although social media platforms and strategies vary among businesses, there are some staple platforms every restaurant owner should consider using. These include,

– Instagram
– Facebook
– Twitter

Instagram

Instagram allows customers to directly message your establishment and respond to Instagram stories (showcase your business in real time). This once again provides an excellent means for your customers to engage with you and with the additional option of adding a call to action on Instagram posts, customers can reserve a restaurant table and pay in advance, all online!

Facebook

Facebook Pages offer an easy way to input your information, including opening hours, address, messaging options and favorite times to visit. Pages also allows you to showcase your restaurants busiest hours. This can be incredibly helpful for those who are unfamiliar with your establishment.

Twitter

Twitter is fantastic for promotions. Merely encouraging customers to retweet vouchers or new restaurant menu item deals can be a great way to spread the news about your food establishment through word of mouth which is arguably, one of the best means to market online (reviews).

How to Create Posts

The biggest flaw for food businesses advertising on social media is that they are too blunt with promotions and don’t take the time to engage with their customers. Despite this, however, there is a better way to market yourself while doing it less aggressively.

Essentially, you want to approach social media like you would a group of strangers at a party. Give a short and sweet appetizer about yourself while mostly engaging with other people. Engagement posts focus the conversation on your customers. Therefore, the key is not so much promotion as it is ENGAGEMENT.
Here are a just a few ideas to begin a conversation:

  1. Ask a question
  2. Solicit customer opinions on new products
  3. Incorporate user-generated content into your strategy

Overall Effectiveness?

Overall the effectiveness of social media has a radiant effect on the food and drink industry. With social media not only can you engage with your customers directly, but more importantly, you can showcase the delicious food you have to offer.

That perfect slice of pizza, freshly baked bread, and well-assembled sandwich can inevitably create a mouth-watering reaction for your customers. Ultimately, all social media does is that it gives them that first appetizer, the main course is waiting for you in the restaurant.

Conclusion

All in all, at Sooner Marketing Solutions we don’t just create random posts and upload meaningless stories. Instead, we do the research and get inside the customers head. We do our best to make your restaurant stand out miles further than the rest through smart social media marketing strategies. So if you’re interested in taking your business to the next level contact us today and let us tell your story.

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