Facebook is the perfect place to find new customers for your restaurant. Here’s why.
With successful inception in 2004, Facebook upheld its mission to engage people from all parts of the world, bring them closer together, and give them a chance to expand their communities.
And true enough, various businesses, regardless of size, took them up on their offer. With over 1.52 billion daily active users as of December 2018, it’s no surprise how famous restaurants are reaping the benefits of restaurant marketing on Facebook.
So, if you’re mocking up a marketing strategy to bring in more customers, start with Facebook.
Who Did It Right
If you’re not convinced, let’s take a trip down memory lane and revisit KFC’s staggering 27-million-people reach back in 2017.
KFC, a popular chicken restaurant chain, established more than 70 years ago, has now over 20,500 outlets in more than 125 countries. Despite their success, they still wanted to invite more diners and increase sales by reeling them into the nearest KFC location. Through the use of Facebook store visits ad objective, they strategically put relevant ads on people’s News Feed, uploaded mouthwatering photos, and encouraged them to visit the nearest KFC chain.
Along with enticing photos, a “Get Directions” call-to-action button with a map to the nearest KFC branch was also evident on the ad. Of course, KFC didn’t want to waste ad spend, so they also utilized the “interests targeting” option, so they only reach potential customers who like chicken restaurant chains.
McDonald’s also has another success story with Facebook marketing campaigns. With over 35,000 stores worldwide, you probably wouldn’t even assume they’d still bother to use a restaurant marketing Facebook mobile app through ads. McDonald’s Middle East was one of the official restaurants of the 2018 World Cup. Knowing many people would probably download the app, they took advantage of the situation through app engagement.
McDonald’s offered daily discounts that were only redeemed using the official app. They had a 45-day “discount spree” which was before, during, and after the World Cup. The “45 Days of Surprises” gave customers different discounts and freebies daily.
They had a favorable outcome from using these Facebook ads and garnered 820,000 total discount redemptions. So, if your restaurant lacks an online presence, here are some effective restaurant marketing strategies you can try on Facebook.
Reach Out to Your Target Market
You don’t want to waste your time, money, and effort marketing your restaurant on Facebook without reaching the right target audience. Before you spend money on Facebook ads or getting your content out there, you’d definitely want to research the potential customers nearby, their interests, and the purchasing approach.
By using Facebook Audience Insights, you can collect information according to:
- Age and gender
- Page Likes
- Facebook usage
- Purchase activity
- Page or event connections
Facebook Audience Insights does not break user privacy though. It aggregates information that is already displayed to the public. This tactic will help you control where your Facebook ads and content are shown.
Designing Your Facebook Ads
The Facebook ad design is the first thing potential customers will see as they’re scrolling their feed. After your target marketing research, focus on how your ad looks and makes people feel.
Does the image look attractive?
Is the ad on-brand for the restaurant?
Does it stand out against competing restaurants?
If you saw this Facebook ad, would you eat there?
Work with graphic designers who are experienced in designing Facebook advertising and the food and beverage industry.
Share Valuable Information Regularly
As more Facebook industry pages compete for user attention, they’d sometimes resort to unimpressive click-bait content to draw users in. However, this strategy turns off people right off the bat. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve unfollowed Facebook pages because they didn’t offer me something of value anymore.
Once you’ve determined your audience’s interests and demographics, offer them something valuable such as free recipes, interesting facts, or a snippet of your menu with appealing images.
It’s recommended that you post daily so your followers will have something to look forward to. Posting once a day on Facebook and posting from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM will get you more engagement. Posting regularly will be easier with a social media planning calendar too.
Contests are always a great way to increase engagement with your audience while marketing your restaurant to potential customers as well. Here are some restaurant marketing Facebook contest ideas:
Tag Your Friends
Post a delectable image or video and ask your followers to tag two or three friends. Pick out a winner weekly and give them a discounted meal or a free dessert.
People always want to try out a new restaurant in town but are sometimes hesitant about spending money. A giveaway coupon will encourage them to join contests. You can set up a “Guess the Dish” contest and pick out a winner for the coupon. Or what about asking them to take a snapshot of the most delicious food they ate for the day in exchange for coupons.
Share the Menu
Another effective restaurant marketing contest on Facebook is asking your followers to share your menu on their FB accounts. This does not only give you free publicity, but it’s exceptionally advantageous especially those users with a considerable following.
Create an Email List
Email marketing is also an excellent way to communicate and market your restaurant directly to your potential customers. Here’s how you can gather email information from your audience:
- Install a plugin “opt-in” form on your Facebook page.
- Offer a coupon in exchange for email information.
- Add a landing page and an opt-in tab on your site.
- Add a call-to-action “Join” button together with your photos or videos for your email list.
- Include a call to action on weekly newsletters.
- Set up a call-to-action button on your cover photo.
Invest in Facebook Ad Campaigns
The great thing about Facebook ad campaigns is that they let you control how and where you want your ads displayed, and how much you want to pay for your ads as well.
You can even choose the ad objective which can be brand awareness, higher app downloads, or sales increase. You may also select the audience you want to reach based on demographics or locations. Facebook Ads also allow you to pick a format that is suitable for every device or speed. Last but not least, you can manage your ad through the Facebook Ads Manager. This way, you can cut your losses and revamp your Facebook ad approach if necessary.
The reason why restaurant marketers are dipping their toes into restaurant marketing Facebook strategies is that it gives them carte blanche on their preference, budgeting, monitoring, and advertising modifications. Being such a dynamic social media platform, it’s no surprise why digital restaurant marketers turn to good old Facebook to reach out to their audience and boost revenues. And if your competitors are doing it – it’s high time you should be doing it too.