18 May RESTAURANT MARKETING AGENCY – How To Make The Most Of The Reopening of your restaurant
At the time of writing, the UK’s restaurants are opening back up for indoor dining. For hospitality businesses, this date couldn’t have come quickly enough. But with so many restaurants vying for custom, however, how do you ensure that you’re standing out from the rest? It’s difficult but it’s not impossible. The team here at VerriBerri, an Essex restaurant marketing agency, wanted to show you some of the ways in which hospitality venues can secure that surge of business.
Show Off Your COVID-Secure Measures
We get it, nobody wants to hear that word anymore, nobody wants to remember that it’s still a thing – but, unfortunately, it is. Whilst certain demographics will be excited for a carefree return to normality, not everybody is going to be so gung-ho in attitude. You’re looking to cater to everybody, and that includes the more anxious members of the public.
Use your restaurant’s social media platforms (and if you haven’t got any, then we’d advise that being your first port of call) to showcase your hygiene measures. Whether it’s one-way systems, Perspex screens, regular wipe downs or contact tracing, the onus is on you to show people that you’re a restaurant worth going back out for.
This should be your foundation because, although you may think all restaurants would be making these efforts, many still aren’t; if you don’t, then you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Brand image is a huge part of what we tackle here at our restaurant marketing agency, and – at the minute, at least – your brand image is only as strong as your COVID-secure measures.
An Extra Incentive
Everybody loves a prize. From the coconut shy to the national lottery and everything in between, the person who tells you that they don’t enjoy winning something at least a teensy bit, is lying. And, at the moment, the added incentive of being a winner – of securing a prize – might well boost business. Social media competitions are a great way of further building your following, drumming up excitement (or ‘buzz’) and gaining some easy positive PR for your business.
Offering 2-for-1 vouchers, a free meal coupon or any other sort of prize can be an easy way of securing the post-lockdown restaurant attention. The social media department of our restaurant marketing agency can help craft custom graphics and manage the competition, if that’s something you’ve not had experience handling, yourselves!
Spruce Up Your Website
How’s your website looking? Truthfully? There’s going to be a lot of people currently Googling away for restaurants to try near them, at the minute, and you only have a small opportunity by which to capture their attention. There’s a world of difference between rustic and rubbish; you might offer the most authentic Greek or Italian cuisine, or the finest
pub grub that the countryside has to offer, but if your website isn’t up to scratch? You can wave goodbye to that custom. You might argue, well why does it matter? Why can’t my food do the talking? Word-of-mouth marketing and reputation, as good as it is, can’t get you the sort of business it once did, and especially not in today’s digital world. Most people find their restaurants online, and most people are going to take notice of what the website is like. We’re not saying it has to be all the bells and whistles, but it should be slick, clean and modern.
Whilst looking at your restaurant’s website, you should consider its overall SEO. What’s SEO, we hear you ask? SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and, essentially, it refers to how well your website is geared up to be ‘crawled’ (or viewed) by search engines. Your website’s SEO value is what determines whether your website ranks or not – and if so, where. Take it from our restaurant marketing agency, this matters!
If you’re competing with lots of other Italian restaurants in your area, and you’re not showing high up on Google for ‘Best Italian restaurant in X’ then you’ve got a problem. Fortunately, it’s a problem that can be addressed! Look at your website’s content – how much does its copy actually contain the kinds of keywords and phrases you want to be ranking high up on search engines for? In fact, how much content is there, full stop? Websites with ‘thin’ content (not much) are always going to struggle to rank well, and if your website is low on content, then that might be contributing towards your lower rankings.
If those keywords aren’t there, you’re going to struggle to rank for them. Have you written meta descriptions for your posts and pages? Have you got duplicate content? Are your images compressed, and do they have alt-tags? These are the sorts of things that can (and do) affect SEO but that many people don’t realise affect SEO.
Again, if you’re unsure where to start with SEO, then our restaurant marketing agency can help! SEO is a constantly changing and updating area, so we’d not be surprised if you needed a bit of help even if you did know the basics! With Google’s frequent algorithm updates, it can be hard to keep up with what’s wanted by Google and what isn’t.
It’s an exciting time, and it finally feels as though we’re getting back towards some semblance of normality. It’s not an opportunity to be wasted, however, so make sure that you’ve followed these tips! As a summary; show off your COVID measures, the more the better. Consider a social media prize draw to manufacture some buzz around your restaurant’s indoor return. Finally, make sure your website is up to date and ‘fresh’ as it can be, so that you’re giving yourself the best possible chance of securing customers via online traffic.
So, if you’d like to find out more about our restaurant marketing agency, then get in touch! Contact VerriBerri today on 01376 386 850 or by emailing us at [email protected] You can also message us via one of our social media platforms and we’ll do our best to get back to you as quickly as possible!