Email marketing is a highly cost effective method when it comes to attracting more customers. This is especially true for restaurants. A lot of people tend to convert and respond to restaurant email marketing than other means. You need to attract as many people to your restaurant as possible to be successful. Email marketing helps in attracting that huge crowd. Email marketing is the go-to way to grow your restaurant business.
Some of the benefits of restaurant email marketing include:
- Helps small businesses to plan their marketing strategy in a very effective and easy way.
- It helps in building brand awareness among existing and new customers.
- Emails helps to create a customer database as people actively sign up for updates from their favorite restaurants.
- Helps in customer retention by sending personalized emails with coupons and offers.
Let’s have a look at the various tips and strategies you can use in your email marketing.
1. Choosing the right software:
Choosing the right software to automate or manage your orders, and be flexible at the same time is essential for any restaurant. This is your first step towards building and attracting a customer base so it has to be done right. Fishbowl is one such example which has different setups and solutions for restaurant chains and individual restaurants. Softwares like fishbowl have different operational services for different types of restaurants and give you the flexibility to choose according to your need. MailChimp is another software to help in reaching out to your customer base easily. Looking into what kind of software would be best would be and the functions is essential for your restaurant’s online presence.
2. Create basic templates like Thank you messages
Create your basic templates for automatic reply. You can use them when someone subscribe to your email list or newsletter. Using a thank you message as greeting for subscription or ordering can help put a professional image. A one-liner message that acts as a token of appreciation goes a long way in being professional as a restaurant. On the same lines, some restaurants also provide first time discounts to their new subscribers and customers. Using such discounts and thank you greeting may not look like much but plays an essential part in the customer’s image about your restaurant. Including the restaurant’s information like address, contact number, short location description in every mail is also crucial. This way people don’t have to search for your restaurant on other sites. To get more attention to your emails, make sure you use appropriate images and an attractive header. a 600-620 pixels image works great in such emails.
3. Building your lists
After setting up your software and planning out the details regarding the email campaigns, the next step is to build your lists. There are several ways to build your email lists, both offline and online. It is up to you to choose the feasible strategy as possible. Here are some tips to use to gather those valuable subscribers:
- Your opt-in form should be easily visible on the first page or the landing page of your website. Adding this option to take-ordering page and reservation pages also is a great idea to expand your lists.
- Offering a discount for signing up for signing up acts as an effective way to gather the customers.
- Additionally, sharing your opt-in forms on social media platforms also acts as a great way to reach out to a large audience and get more opt-ins.
- Using comment cards in the restaurant for people to share feedback and personal details. Giving out a comment card while the customers wait for the check is a great strategy. This is because people are more likely to fill out these cards at waiting times like this.
- The most important point and something that shouldn’t be overlooked is- permission. It should be clear to the customers what purpose they’re giving out information about them is. Sending out emails to people who don’t want to receive or don’t remember signing up will harm your restaurant’s image.
- You can also tie-up with any hospitality company and provide your services during events organized by them. This way you can serve big orders. You can but email database for hospitality company and send them email about your offers and services.
4. Consistency and planning:
Irrespective of busy or slow times at the restaurants, your email marketing campaign should be consistent. This is because it comes across as inconsistent and unprofessional to customers. No one wants their favorite restaurant closed down or the offers and food to stop rolling out. Instead, try to foresee and plan the slow and high volume periods ahead of time. That way you can strategize your email marketing according to the time of the year or month. Tailoring emails ahead of time for when you can expect high volume because of a special event or festival is also likely to put you at ease. Using discounts and offers during slow periods can greatly help in increasing the volume using your emails marketing strategy. Additionally, using high volume busy periods to tell people about any awards or honorary mentions your restaurant mentioned. Moreover, sending out emails in evening and night time works better because that’s the time people tend to crave food.
5. Segmentation and personalization:
Like any other business, personalization and segmentation are quintessential for your restaurant. Segmenting your receivers based on the kind of cuisine they prefer or based on past history is the way to go. People are less likely to reply or order from your restaurant of course if they’re not being attracted based on the kind of food they like. Use the process of segmentation based on the data gathering techniques employed. On the same lines, personalization is just as important here as segmentation. A better strategy to use segmentation is do it while collecting emails itself to save yourself the trouble later. Make lists based on different patterns to begin with. Additionally, for personalizing your emails use the receiver’s name in the subject line or the header itself. Majority of email marketing software already have this option to use.
Finally, it is also important to focus on your email marketing analytics features if any. This is because after all the email id collection, orders placed, at the end of the day you want your restaurant to improve. Using analytics can help you in seeing what’s wrong and what’s right. Using factors like customer reviews, satisfaction/dissatisfaction levels can all help you make better decisions to attract more customers. If you want to grow and have a fully booked quality restaurant or chain at all times, following up and analyzing after all the hard work is necessary.