Not every restaurateur or startup restaurant has the budget to spend lavishly on promoting a restaurant. This is rather conflicting for restaurant owners as you obviously believe the restaurant needs to be promoted if it were to bring in new customers. How do you promote your restaurant and at the same time not bust through the budget?
Let’s look at low cost ideas to promote your restaurant.
Get your restaurant consultant to have the restaurant listed. There are plenty of restaurant directories, message boards, tourism guides, yellow pages and other online listings. Many of these listings cost very little or are completely free. This won’t impact your overall budget in any way. In fact, many restaurant-goers check listings both online and offline when choosing to visit a restaurant for the first time. Your budget will be put to good use if you get a restaurant consultant to take on the mighty task of listing your restaurant in popular directories.
Talk to your customers. Go up to their tables and hold conversations. Find out how they heard about the restaurant. What kind of customers are they? This may be your niche group, or at least a part of your target audience. The more you find out information about existing customers the easier it will be to target people just like them.
Use social media platforms. Social media is an effective and low cost method to get your message across. Get onto Facebook, twitter and Instagram and start scouring for customers. Post images of your restaurant, food and staff. Make it seem accessible, friendly and fun along with delicious food. Many people check social media sites when picking a new restaurant to dine at. In addition, get your existing customers to post reviews and feedback that will encourage prospective customers to read positive things about your restaurant.
Cultivate a referral system. Word of mouth marketing is still powerful and you can use it to your advantage. Offer an incentive if a customer brings a new friend the next time they frequent your restaurant. For instance, the incentive can be in the form of a free drink or dessert.
Be distinctive. Be different to other restaurants in the area and even your competitors. Standout from the crowd. The more you present your restaurant as unique, the bigger the chances you have of attracting new customers to your restaurant. People are always looking for something different, and you can capitalize on this requirement.