The Ultimate Guide to Social Media Marketing For Restaurants

Ain't no such thing as the "Ultimate Guide" to achieving XYZ effect in your business. However, we have come pretty close to cracking the code on social media marketing for restaurants and all there is to it. Find out why it's super important for you to get started today!

When it comes to social media marketing for restaurants, we’ve got plenty of interesting stats to whet your appetite – i.e., if you’re the type of business owner who pays extra attention to data-driven metrics.

As a matter of fact, relying on historic data to formulate a super awesome strategy for whatever purpose is always a good decision. This way, you’re able to identify the pros of cons of a certain strategy in any niche industry. And afterward, you can adapt and improvise according to your business requirements, etc.

There were more than 371 million posts on social media with hashtags related to #Food and #Drinks over the last two years. Instagram was the most popular platform since it allows restaurateurs to combine visuals and words to come up with head-turning marketing tactics.

Needless to say, since 2016, if you have been involved in social media marketing for restaurants in one way or another, it is very likely for your customers to post stuff with and without your interaction. On the other hand, we also have social media influencers to consider. These guys play a huge role in sending referral traffic to any brand through paid reviews, sponsored content, or unbiased in-depth analysis posts.

As of 2021, studies reveal that almost 80% – 90% of social media users are easily influenced by reviews posted by social media influencers. And why wouldn’t it be that way? If you were a potential customer, would you go on a whim to purchase something from a brand, or rely on popular product reviews to make an informed decision?

We all know the answer to the aforementioned dilemma.

Moving on, this post will fill you in on different strategies and tips for scaling your social media marketing for restaurant KPIs.

So, without delaying it anymore, let’s get started.

Why Social Media Marketing For Restaurants Is Super Important To F&B Businesses?

We are almost at the end of the year 2021. Bearing that in mind, can a restaurant afford not to take advantage of social media these days?

Some would argue and say, yes, but we agree to disagree. Unless and until, the said food business is already crazy-popular, and the word of mouth marketing factor is very high, this type of business will do “fine” without actively partaking in any social media marketing for restaurants strategy.

On the contrary, businesses really don’t delve into that kind of practice. Here’s the reason behind that.

According to a 2016 social media marketing for restaurants report, experts from Sprout Social reportedly said that almost 75% of the people bought a product after they saw a social media influencer review.

On top of that, there’s another 60% online visitors who need to see some kind of review, or an in-depth review post about a product before they decide to buy anything.

social media marketing for restaurants in 2021, how to market your food business through social media networks

Do you see where we’re going with this?

As time goes by, social media marketing for restaurants or any other business, for that matter, is becoming increasingly important. Yes, technically, a restaurant can continue to function without actively taking part in social media marketing strategies. However, any good business wouldn’t want to miss out on millions of opportunities to connect with new, and repeat customers – and that too, on daily basis.

Especially, since people are practically interwoven on the internet, it doesn’t take long for one creative post to go viral. The word-of-mouth marketing effect comes into action. And before you know it, everyone’s curious about your restaurant’s most popular deal of the day, chef’s specials, or stuff like that.

Before Partaking In Social Media Marketing For Restaurants Antics, Make Sure That You’re Taking Care of The Following Doables…

1. Fill Out Your Entire Profile

For businesses, it is essential to fill out all the relevant and current information in the ‘About’ section of their social media profile pages. Make sure that the pertinent information to your active work hours, contact information, and address is mentioned where people can look it up easily.

Moving forward, you can add multiple locations to your profile to help people contact you. Doing so will also enable the concerned social media profile admins to verify your account. Besides, people find it easier to trust and do business with companies that have verified accounts on social media networks.

2. Add Social Commerce Element To Your Pages

Social commerce is part of the Quick Commerce movement in the online industries these days. There are many attributes of social commerce, but the basic idea for restaurant businesses is to help people order directly from the social media page.

This can be done by adding Order Now or Book a Reservation button to your restaurant’s social media page. For instance, Facebook helps restaurant owners to add the following stuff to their profiles, as part of the social commerce function:

  • Add a Book Now Button
  • Ability to Upload Your Online Food Order Menu
  • You Can Add Different Cuisine Types
  • Categories Your Food Menu as, “For Kids”, “Good for Groups”, “For Takeout” etc.

Lastly, don’t forget to add the review section to your online page. This way, whenever someone dines at your restaurant or places an online order, that person can share his experience of doing business with your restaurant through the review box.

Reviews are especially helpful to first-time customers who never ordered food from you. Make sure that you are offering high-quality services and delectable food items so that a lot of positive reviews are coming your way.

3. Listen & Respond To Your Customers

A delightful customer experience in the F&B industry isn’t always about serving customers. Sometimes, when your customers have issues with their order, they want the problem to be rectified from your staff’s end.

In lieu of such predicaments, adopt a proactive approach of responding to customers in a timely manner.

Sometimes, competitors and disgruntled customers share fake reviews on your online social media marketing for restaurants’ official page, other websites, and vice versa. Although this is a daunting prospect as it puts your business in a negative light, you can still tackle it.

While handling negative reviews, make sure that the customer has a legit concern, and he did in fact order something from your restaurant’s side. If the review is completely baseless, you can turn the tables by sharing any evidence that might help other potential customers to clear the misunderstanding.

Social Media Marketing for Restaurants | The 'Distressed Mother With A Baby' Dilemma

A lot of mothers share a common concern over the lack or unavailability of baby changing tables in restaurants. This is a real problem when diapers have to be changed in the middle of a meal, or during rush hours.

As it turns out, recently a mother shared her concerns about this issue on Facebook. She suggested that the restaurants should come up with portable tables installation so that anyone looking to change their baby’s diapers, doesn’t have to panic anymore. Her post was answered.

social media marketing for restaurants in 2021, how to market your food business through social media networks

According to this distressed mother, since toilets and handicap parking spots have become a standard these days, why weren’t restaurants doing anything to resolve the portable table requirement.

A lot of mothers have to change their baby’s diapers in the carriage or at the back of the restaurant, which causes distress and inconvenience from time to time.

Restaurants responded to Magda by asking her where these tables could be bought. What’s more that the managers from some of the restaurants thanked Magda for raising her concern on this important matter.

After a few days, a restaurant went the extra mile to inform Magda and any other mothers facing the same issue out there that the tables were bought and installed. All of this happened on Facebook, where thousands of other patrons watched the “banter” casually unfold.

Having said that, if you still think that social media marketing for restaurants isn’t relevant or not that much “important” in 2021, well, we just gave you enough evidence to reconsider your opinions.

4 Tips To Take Social Media Marketing for Restaurants To The Next Level

1. Don’t Hold Back on Collaborations

Time and time again, we have talked about collaborating with other people on social media networks to scale your business. This is a simple, but highly effective tactic, where the influencer can send a boatload of traffic to your online business page through his/her own content.

For food business collaborations, get in touch with popular restaurants, chefs, or bartenders to get started on a strategy that would eventually help to take it to the next level. Of course, many influencers charge for sharing content related to your services, but some of them don’t.

Contact everyone on social media who you think easily befits the influencer profile and see how it goes from there.

2. Feature Someone Popular On Your Page

A great way to scale your social media marketing for restaurants strategy is to work with someone popular. You can contact celebrities, famous chefs, or people from the tech industry who are commonly known and recognized on the internet.

By doing so, you will be attracting potential customers through the celebrity’s social media profile. Another great way of working with famous people, or influencers is to create a collaborative online food order menu or an event.

For instance, you can get in touch with makers of any popular sauce brand to create a special recipe that has the company’s signature sauce, to begin with.

Later on, this content can be published on your social media page, and the collaborator’s website to attract more people to the business.

3. Host Live Events

Live streaming is another important strategy where F&B businesses take full advantage of it. You can set up a funny Q&A session with your chefs, or staff members, or go behind the scenes to let your social media followers in on what goes behind the curtains.

Such live events are a great way of developing a connection with your audience, who in turn, can affect the word-of-mouth marketing factor afterward. Try this particular strategy and let us know how it went.

4. Use Customer Data To Your Advantage

As we mentioned earlier, data-driven metrics are the key to converting more customers.

As of right now, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have their own analytics portal where you can keep tabs on customer sales trends, past order history, the most active month of the year in terms of sales, etc.

Furthermore, these results can be filtered by demographics, months, weeks, and other variables to highlight your strengths and pain points.

Some of the key KPIs/ indicators of how well your social media marketing for restaurants campaign is performing is by keeping an eye out on the following:

  • Number of times people used your restaurant’s name in a hashtag
  • Number of positive vs. negative online customer reviews
  • Facebook check-ins against your restaurant
  • Any tagged photos on customers end, or posts, etc.

Conclusion

As of right now, food and beverage businesses are taking full advantage of whatever social media has to offer. That perfect slice of pizza or those smoldering brownies are no longer sitting quietly on your customers’ tables.

People talk about everything through their social media pages. It’s high time that you take full use of the content that’s already available to you, and get in touch with your customers to take it all to the next level.

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