Marketing a bar or restaurant should be pretty straightforward, right? After all, aren’t people always looking for new places to dine or a hot new bar to try out? Unfortunately, though the restaurant industry calls out to many entrepreneurs, the ones who succeed typically know how to market their products and services effectively.
Whether you’re thinking of opening up a pizza-by-the-slice eatery or you’re thinking that your metro area would benefit from a new bar concept, you must take the time to study hospitality marketing and brand identity. Understanding a few key concepts makes it that much likelier that your business will attract new customers and entice returning diners. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
1. You should pick up some SEO essentials.
These days, SEO for restaurants is almost a must, especially for smaller eateries and kitchens. While you might not necessarily require an in-house marketing team to help you establish your brand identity, you need to grasp what restaurant marketing looks like and how it can impact your bottom line. For starters, SEO, or search engine optimization, is an ideal tool to help make your brand digitally visible to your target audience. Although word-of-mouth referrals are still beneficial for generating buzz, mastering SEO can help you connect with a broader audience.
It’s also critical that you consider your marketing materials and brand assets and how you leverage those across digital channels like social media and advertising platforms. Understanding how SEO functions can help you improve your brand consistency and build a more robust digital workflow.
2. Invest in brand management software.
Whether a customer is talking to a team member over the phone or dining in your restaurant, you want them to have a positive brand experience. However, ensuring consistency is often tricky for newer restaurants, especially ones that haven’t established firm brand guidelines. That’s why brand management software can help you make smarter choices concerning brand compliance, marketing collateral, and your digital assets.
Brand portal software is a logical inclusion for any eatery’s brand strategy. With the right software platforms, you can leverage diverse functions to monitor brand development, compile press release templates, and share brand guidelines across your entire organization. Especially if you’re considering opening a second location, brand management software can help you develop intuitive collateral and rethink your existing digital asset management strategy.
3. Develop more engaging content.
If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that the average American is incredibly willing to consume content. What if you could turn that content consumption into food consumption at your restaurant? With content marketing skills, you can. Whether you’re writing marketing materials for social media or you’re uploading product images to your site, you should take time to think about whether your content is genuinely designed to engage someone. Does your written content tell a story? Are your videos clear, concise, and user-friendly? Do browsers have easy access to your past blog posts and topics? If you answered no to any of those questions, you might want to consider restructuring your content creation strategy.
Your diners not only want to try your food, but they also want to get to know businesses more intimately than ever before. You can take these concepts and apply them to your marketing and brand strategy to significant effect, potentially improving your bottom line and generating lifelong customers.
With a few savvy marketing essentials, you can take greater control over your restaurant’s digital presence than ever before. While a restaurant should always be about the food, your customers need to find you first. With marketing strategies in place, they can.