Word-of-Mouth Restaurant Promotion – Three Key Strategies For Increasing Sales
Word-of-mouth marketing is probably the oldest and ultimately one of the most effective forms of marketing on Earth. Quite simply, it means that people spread “word” of your restaurant or company among their personal network. The simple fact is that people trust friends more than even experts. In fact, one study found that 65% of people would trust their friend over a so-called expert. In this article we will show you how to encourage word-of-mouth advertising!
Of course, for Word-of-mouth marketing to work you need to make sure all customers will have a great experience. This means making sure that your staff treats everyone well, that the food tastes great and is always properly cooked, and that everything else is running smoothly.
So how do you tap into Word-of-mouth marketing? We will outline three strategies that will help your word-of-mouth marketing campaign succeed!
1) Get Customers Through the Door
The more customers you have, the more likely they are to spread the word about your restaurant or other small business. This may seem like common sense but actually getting these customers through the door can be a bit tricky.
Luckily, there are a ton of tools you can use to draw in customers, such as Groupon, Living Social, and even regular social media websites like Facebook and Twitter. These websites will allow you to advertise deals and spread the message. Websites that specialize in deals, like Groupon, will let you run specials like “Half Off, Tuesday” or “Early Bird- Free Coffee.” And we all know that customers love good deals.
Don’t waste your time with skimpy specials either, like 5% off. If you are really looking to fill your seats you will have to give out really good deals. You don’t have to do this all of the time and in order to protect your brand it should be tied to a special occasion, such as your Grand Opening or the Chinese New Year. Otherwise it will damage your brand and its perceived value.
2) Give them something good to talk about.
Of course just getting the customer to come into your store is just half the battle. As mentioned, you also have to make sure that you treat them well and you need to serve good food. Make sure that you smile and quietly greet every customer, and always thank them for their business. And if they have a problem, listen closely!
When customers have a good and memorable experience at your restaurant they are likely to share that experience with co-workers, friends, and family. That is why it is absolutely essential to provide high quality service and always treat the customer as king.
You should also note that if the customer has a bad experience they will spread that message among their friends, family, and social networks. So make sure you provide them with a great experience or your efforts will backfire!
3) Give Out Social Media Incentives
As we already noted, social media is an extremely powerful tool for Word-of-mouth marketing. Social media essentially takes the customer’s viewpoint and blasts it through their entire social network. Social media now allows word-of-mouth advertising to spread much more quickly and far farther than ever before.
You can consider a range of techniques to increase how often people use social media in association with your restaurant. For example:
• A free round of drinks for checking into Foursquare or any similar site while at the restaurant
• 10% off for updating their Facebook status about their great experience at your restaurant
• A free dessert for any Yelp or Google Plus review
• Free soda for any Tweet
Using social media will help you utilize word-of-mouth advertising for your restaurant at a rapid rate. Of course, you need to be careful. If you provide customers with a bad experience social media can also be used to broadcast this negative experience to the world. This can and frequently does happen. Social media and all word-of-mouth marketing is essentially a doubled edged sword, so be careful and focus on your customer’s satisfaction!