Crafting a Restaurant Marketing Plan

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Hospitality Marketing Trends and Tricks
June 1, 2016
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Crafting a Restaurant Marketing Plan

You Have to Find What Works and Adjust. Crafting a restaurant marketing plan can be a tricky endeavor. There’re a few simple questions you need to ask yourself straight away.


What are your goals with each effort? What is your target audience? (buyer persona)

I get a variety of answers when I ask these questions so before we get started let me explain what I would look for in each case. We’ll start with the goals. Now in many cases, people think that the objective is always to drive reservations in the near term to make more money. Unfortunately, it’s not always that simple. There are many benefits to brand awareness, gathering contact information with giveaways, and longer term goals such as creating a platform for inbound marketing.


Diversify Your Restaurant Marketing Plan

It pays to diversify your approach a bit between near-term, mid-term, and longer-term goals so that you don’t get caught in the trap that many fall victim too. Businesses that only focus on the near-term gain wind up in a cycle of spending more money for immediate traffic. In marketing, scrambling from behind is a bad place to be given that the more you spend, the more your margins contract. Typically, this is when people reach out to us for assistance. It always pays to be well ahead in the planning and execution of a well-developed marketing plan.


Take the Long View When Possible

Many of the longer-term goals will allow you to build lists and contacts that will make your marketing cheaper and cheaper as your business grows. When you can plan ahead in the restaurant business, you can market straight to the customers walking in the door and set the stage for future business as well.


One of Cover Funnel’s Approaches

At Cover Funnel we look for ways to add value via live traffic from multiple sources and making sure you can capture those in your area searching first. We ensure your website is giving those with your buyer persona what they need to make a decision to join you. We test, test, test, and then we drive real-time traffic from your local area via broad social, SEO, Mapping, and PR.  


As we do that, we develop strategies that work for our client to build their longer term plan and ability to go after their target market in the future for lower costs. Email campaigns and information that your typical guest wants are the names of the game to stay at the top of mind. Why pay for clicks if you don’t have to?


Service and Hospitality are Part of Our Marketing Plan

Where Cover Funnel differs from most other restaurant marketing and consulting services is in the service category. Marketing a restaurant is not like selling software. Hospitality is a people business and a firm that doesn’t understand the ins and outs will be banging their heads against the wall at times wondering why people aren’t responding. Anyone can run a PPC (pay-per-click) campaign. What Cover Funnel aims to do is far more than that. Your service must match the marketing. If you have poor service and bad food, then it’s probably better to save the marketing money altogether.


One of the ways Cover Funnel is useful in bringing down marketing costs is by providing a plan towards better hospitality and follow up. If you do that right, you only need to pay for that one click in the first place! The idea is to put yourself on a path to creating lifetime guest and friends. If that part is done right than spending money on your marketing will be money well spent.


Through this process, you need to have a keen eye and always measuring results. It requires a lot of testing, recognizing when you’re wrong, and being able to change course. The same goes within the restaurant if you have a dish that you love, but it keeps getting returned, do you keep it on the menu? Of course not!


We wish you the best and look forward to hearing from you. We are always here if you need us!


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