A restaurant manager named Cameron recently wrote us an email in which he said the following:
“I want to find new ways to market my restaurant to families, but with margins so tight these days, I don’t have any money left over for a marketing budget.”
… Does that sound like anyone you know?
The good news is, you don’t have to spend thousands — or even hundreds — of dollars in order to market your restaurant more effectively to your customers. When cash is lacking, creativity has to be stepped-up!
Here are 5 highly effective marketing strategies you can use to get more people through your doors—and none of them will cost you a penny:
- Use Facebook to promote your business. All it costs is your time, and 15 minutes a day is more than enough to keep the conversation going. The following will grow and industry leaders are showing Facebook to be worth doing and doing well.
- Train your staff to treat your young diners like rock stars – they’ll remember how great you made them feel and will beg their parents to take them back again
- Add weekly or nightly specials to the kids’ menu, too and post them wherever you post the adult specials. Include special promos on things kids love, such as Shirley Temples, appetizers, or dessert. Kids will love the idea that they have special items geared specifically toward them, and they’ll want to come back to see what your next “kids’ menu special” is.
- Host special “Family Hour” events on nights when business is slow, such as every Monday from 5:00 – 6:30 p.m. Offer a great discount to offer added enticement, such as half price on all kids’ meals. Then promote the event on your Facebook page and through word of mouth, telling all of your customers about it and encouraging them to attend.
- Encourage your customers with mobile phones to give you great reviews on the ‘Net’s top review sites, such as Yelp.com, CitySearch.com, MetaFlavor.com, and WhereTheLocalsEat.com. These sites are becoming more popular with people searching for restaurants online, and the restaurants with the highest number of reviews and the highest rating are the ones that get the most customers.
Just make sure you give them some compelling incentive to do so. A gift card offering two-for-one entrees or free appetizers with their next meal would probably do the trick but then of course that’s not free!
All of these strategies are great ways to grow your restaurant business. And all of them are completely free or nearly free, depending on how you want to approach them. If you would like to learn more about how you can use these marketing strategies and others to take your restaurant business to the next level, we would love to help.
At The Family Hospitality Group we help you implement cost-effective marketing strategies that will help your grow your top and bottom lines faster than you thought possible. Take a look at our low-cost child accommodation products – a carefully-selected set of proven winners for making your business #1 with families – at http://shop.familyhospitality.com.
Check out our blog for other ways to market your business very cost-effectively.
To learn more about how we can help you grow your restaurant business, feel free to contact us at: http://www.familyhospitality.com/contact-us/.