Here at Vira International we have a special relationship with our clients and candidates. As a recruitment company in the hospitality sector we are unique in the way that we help our clients recruit great Chefs and in many cases bring them in from abroad on a sponsorship visa.
This results in a really close working relationship. So much so last week one of the restaurant owners asked me about online marketing. As a recruiter he knows that this is a skill we have to master.
So here are some suggestions I gave him that I see working for the many restaurants and hospitality businesses we work with
This might sound boring and yet all successful restaurants have a plan on how they will capture market share and how this will be achieved. This might include:
• Minimum daily covers; empty seats=lost revenue
• Seasonal promotions
• Special events e.g. Weddings, Birthdays, Family Parties
Once you know your plan it is now about attracting customers from the various online media channels.
Who is your market? Everyone seems to be on social media and they are; we will come onto facebook and the like later. As a first step let’s look at your website
The popularity of eating out is growing and many people decide on the last minute. Picture the scene your just about to leave work and can’t be bothered cooking. You decide to meet some friends at a local favourite Curry House. So you use your mobile to Google the restaurant and find the number; sound familiar it is. So what can you do?
Make sure your website is responsive. That means it can be seen on any device. If not you could be losing out to those last minute bookings.
Make it enticing
Food is a visual experience. Make sure you have plenty of pictures of food and people enjoying themselves. Have your phone number easily found on every page. And if functionality allows have an online booking form for those times when you can’t get to the phone.
Facebook is popular for restaurants and is a great way of interacting with your audience. One restaurant we know has free Wi-Fi and encourages people to share their photos on facebook and at the end of each week offers a meal voucher; two for one to the best photograph.
Pinterest and Instagram
These particular social media platforms speak into any market where images play a huge part in marketing. Here you can set up accounts and post images of your food, happy customers etc. The benefit is your account will also appear on Google which gives you another way to get food.
We all love Twitter and potentially so do your customers. Make sure you are sending out regular Tweets and encourage dialogue. For instance post your dish of the day and ask for feedback
This is big! As customers leave ask for their email and then send them a special offer. These are the emails people love getting! It is so easy to do.
Till next time,