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Restaurant Marketing Tips

5 Reasons Your Restaurant Marketing Needs to be Data-Driven

With the right strategy, data can change and improve your restaurant marketing. Here are 5 ways to let the numbers lead your decision making for better restaurant marketing and business performance.


More Data-Driven Marketing Related Content from HVMA:
► 20 Things Coffee Shop Owners Need To Do On Social Media To Improve Their Business
► Using Identity Resolution To Create A 360-Degree View Of Your Customers
► Cambridge Analytica’s Huge Data-Driven Plan Gone Bad

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*More Data-Driven Content from HVMA: Are you ready to get a ROI from social media?


Target Audience

Who is your audience? This is a broad question, we know, but with data driven marketing, the answer to this question will be very specific. Knowing your audience is the first step into knowing what type of content to better produce. In your case, learning your audience will let you know which food appeals most! You’ll know what appetizers you should stop making and continue making. It’s time to transform your restaurant marketing strategy. So let’s dive into the minute details of how you can look at the actual data for your restaurant.

Google Analytics is your go-to for analyzing the site traffic of your restaurant. By connecting your site with this platform, you are able to access hundreds of metrics that give you specifics about what’s really going on with your website and social media pages. There are countless reports that Google Analytics offers about your audience. Their demographics breakdown gives you an overview about the number of sessions your users are on. In other words, you can see how long people stay on your website, how quickly they might leave, what pages they view the most, and more. How does this apply to you? Because you’re a restaurant and most people visit a restaurant site to look at the food that’s offered, you can see which food products are viewed the most. Let the data tell you what’s the most popular food on your menu.

You can go even further when it comes to the age and gender of your audience. Google Analytics allows you to analyze the behavior of these respective groups. Not only do you get a report on the different age groups of your audience, but you can view how they interact with your website. For example, the majority of people visiting your site might fall between the ages of 25 and 34. They might stay on your page for a longer site session time than the age group of 18 to 24. In addition, you can even see the interests of certain groups. For each age group, Google Analytics allows you to see their highest interests based on the content on your website. 

Google Analytics will display the top 10 interests for your audience. For example, you might have a page for appetizers, desserts, drinks, brunch specials, happy hour, gift cards, online ordering, or something else. Remember, we’re using the data to make better decisions for our business. Maybe your top audience is in that 25 to 34 range. Their top interests might be brunch specials, happy hour and then appetizers. This data should tell you that you need to put more time into your brunch menu and brunch aesthetic. Maybe you can make a special promotion for discounted drinks during brunch hours. You can also extend your brunch hours from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. to 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Have you thought about adding some music during that time to improve the user experience? Don’t be afraid to change your restaurant marketing techniques for the better.

Learning your audience will also reveal the location of users on your website. Is the majority of your audience that visits your site local? Your restaurant marketing goals have to include reaching the immediate community surrounding it. What if you want to have more success than just the city your business is located in? Digest the location data of your users. What is the second largest location of your audience on Google Analytics? Maybe you need to increase your SEO usage of that city to boost engagement there. A simple tag of another city could give you thousands of new impressions which could lead to more customers. You’re in the restaurant business to make a profit. Learning your audience will bring in new customers and point in the right direction of what to improve.

Improve customer experience

Now that you know your audience, you can continue using data to improve your customers’ experience in your restaurant. What’s one fast and effective way to do this? Encourage customers to fill out surveys and polls on your social media after they visit your restaurant. What does this accomplish? First, it’s an easy way of data collection. Your survey has to include the person’s name and email at the minimum (they might feel uncomfortable sharing their age). By getting their name and email, you have boosted up your email marketing list. On the flip side, these polls are a raw and uncut way to know how your customers are feeling about your business.

How did they feel the service was of their waiters? Did they enjoy the food? Was it too spicy? Did their food come late? How do they feel your restaurant can improve? What’s one thing that they would like to see in your restaurant? While these are all sample questions, the point is that these questions will boost the way customers feel about your restaurant. There’s no better way to find out new ways to improve than to ask the same people that just spent money with you on your website!

Social media pages like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter also allow you to take polls. It’s very important that you utilize the polls and question features on your social media pages due to the fact that all customers might not check your website. Many people check your social media page first. In addition to using your social media profiles to collect data, you are simultaneously increasing customer engagement. While your surveys on your website can be standard and straightforward, you have the ability to be much more creative on social media with the way you collect data.

Email Restaurant Marketing

Restaurant marketing involves gathering the information of your customers. It’s also important to target them with follow up emails. Email marketing is another way of finding out more about your target audience. You can add specific content in your emails to see how your audience engages and reacts to it. Mailchimp allows you to view the percentage of people who opened your email as well as the percentage of clicks that each email received. In addition, you can also analyze the predicted demographics of your audience who clicks and opens the emails. What age are they? Are they majority male or female? Where are they from? How does looking at restaurant email marketing data translate into success for your business?

Let’s use a quick example. Let’s say that many of your customers on your email list really love burgers, while some are really into vegan food. You should target the vegan customers with emails about promotions on new vegan recipes, lunch specials that include salads, and just basic alternatives to accommodate their lifestyle. The same applies to the burger customers. It wouldn’t make sense to advertise discounts on salads to them. If you want to keep their attention, put content in the emails for burgers and fries combinations, create your own burger meals, and more. 

Using this specific restaurant marketing strategy will lead to higher opening rates and click percentages. By knowing which audience to target, it will increase your conversion rate, which is simply the percentage of people who opened and clicked on a link in your email and completed a transaction. In other words, when customers click on your emails, they see the promotion, and then go and purchase a meal through online ordering! You have a new way to track your restaurant growth now.

More specific & optimized content

Data driven marketing tells you exactly what content to post. Earlier we discussed how to learn the interests of your audience. Use the data to develop more specific content on your site. It’s important to know that your site and social media pages need to be optimized when publishing content. For example, let’s say that based on interests, your most popular meal is your Alfredo. Based on that information, you want to make a promotion for a buy one Alfredo meal, get another meal half off. When you create a graphic for this post on social media, you want to have a clear connection between the content you post on Facebook for example and the one that is on your website. 

The content you publish should be based on the data and optimized. The entire point of having the website and social media connected is so that people don’t bounce off your site. A high bounce rate can be the reason you aren’t seeing as much profit as you could be. If a customer visits your Facebook page and clicks the link for the Alfredo special and sees an image of a lasagna meal instead, they are likely to leave. Through data driven restaurant marketing, you already know the content to make more consistently. Go the extra mile and make sure that the same content is published across all platforms!

Tackle competitors 

How else can data driven marketing help you gain an advantage over your competitors? It’s all about giving the people what they want. Now, this is extremely easy for you. Why? Because you’re no longer just assuming what customers want, you’ve done the research. You let the data drive your restaurant marketing strategy. By using data to dive deeper into your audience, you know exactly the type of content they engage with the most. Your competition is simply that, competition.

Other restaurants will be coming after you for the best restaurant title. Data driven restaurant marketing already gives you an advantage because you’re utilizing a tactic that your competition doesn’t. Sure, they can make a fancy new advertisement, but it won’t be as successful as any of your campaigns. Why? Because you know your customers better than any of your competitors know theirs, and the numbers cause you to make better decisions.

Your restaurant can become bigger than you ever dreamed with data driven marketing. Does it take extra time to analyze statistics and data of your company? Yes. But it will be so worth it when you stay consistent with this restaurant strategy and see the growth of your company in the next few months.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Some of the most common questions, along with the complete answers from our social media support experts.

On your LinkedIn profile, there is a button toward the bottom of your profile that says, “Link Facebook.” When you click here, you will be asked for your Facebook information. When you do this, you can easily connect everything together.

On your LinkedIn profile, go to your profile drop down menu in the top right hand corner. Open it and click on “Privacy and Settings.” Directly under “Settings” in the top right hand corner, click on “Manage your Twitter Settings.” This will bring you to another page which invites you to add your Twitter information.

Go to your profile and click “lists.” Create a short description for each list, then add different Twitter accounts. You can decide whether you want them to be public or private.

On your homepage, find groups. In the top right hand corner, there will be a button that says, “create group.” Click on this and make a group and add descriptions and invite people to be a part of it.

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