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Restaurant Delivery Marketing 101: How to Let Customers Know You Deliver

Restaurant Delivery Marketing 101: How to Let Customers Know You Deliver

Restaurant Delivery Marketing 101

This year has hit the restaurant industry like a stiff arm to the throat. Restaurants that have survived COVID don’t talk about paper cost or the fact that plexiglass is back ordered. The global pandemic has changed what consumers look for in a restaurant. In 2020, it’s all about delivery and how you spread the word about delivery.

Global pandemic or not, restaurant delivery is projected to hit an all-time high of more than $26 million this year, adding another layer of revenue to the struggling industry.  So how do you add delivery and/or increase your restaurant delivery sales? We’ve outlined some key marketing initiatives to help make your delivery program a success.

Accurate Online Restaurant Information

When it comes to spreading the word about delivery – look online. That is what your customers are doing!  The 25 – 38-year old age group (Millennials) spend a third of their day online and have the highest disposable income. They use online sources (Google, Yelp, Twitter…) to get information for decision making, especially when it comes to food. Millennials account for more than 30% of all online orders for restaurants and they typically order restaurant delivery, between two & four times per week, with increased frequency due to COVID. This is the age group you want to talk to!

An accurate online presence is key to restaurant success in general, but delivery will not survive without accurate information online. If hungry customers can’t easily find and engage with your delivery options, they will scroll on quickly.

In our Digital Marketing Strategy for Restaurants: A Recipe for Growth Online post we speak to some best practices for maintaining a consistent online presence. You want to make sure all platforms/sites are getting the exact same information – hours of operation, address, phone number and service offerings must be consistent. Google has recently added ordering buttons to restaurant listings based on service offerings (delivery and carryout) – this has been a huge help for getting the word out on delivery. Facebook and Instagram have also added a button that links directly to the preferred online ordering site. Google, Facebook and other third-party sites are doing their part to help spread the word, they just have to have accurate and consistent information to do so.

Accuracy of menu items and pricing is also critical. Double-check menu items and prices on the branded website, social media sites as well as third-party delivery sites. There is nothing worse than a hungry customer that reviewed an outdated menu – they will never forget it and likely will never order from you again. 

Using Keywords for Restaurant Delivery Marketing 

Keywords on your branded website and third-party sites help push your brand to the top of online searches. Basically, how your restaurant and menu are described strongly impacts your SEO. No-Contact or Contact-Free delivery have been huge keywords over the past six months. The big players like DoorDash and Favor added these words to their website description and probably spent a small fortune on PPC. You do not have to do that. What you should do is use strategic and “high” search words to speak to your delivery services on your website, in social media posts and third-party sites. Remember – hashtags are your friends! A few words and phrases to consider:

  • Takeout
  • Curbside
  • Delivery
  • No-Contact
  • Speedy
  • Social Distancing
  • Drive Up
  • Pick Up

If you have partnerships with third-party delivery providers like DoorDash or Favor, you are benefiting from the small fortune they are spending on PPC, email blasts and their apps. We do not recommend partnering with every third-party delivery provider under the sun, the commissions and POS integrations are not friendly to the bottom line when you get too many parties involved. We do recommend doing your research and finding the right partner for your concept. Remember these providers are spending marketing dollars for you when you partner with them so there is a lot of potential.

Create a Branded Digital Experience

Every restaurant has a vibe – relaxed and chill coffee shop, family-oriented pizza place or chic and modern steakhouse. A key to restaurant delivery marketing is to showcase the restaurant vibe digitally; “who you are” as a restaurant must be visible online. People need to feel connected to the brand even if they are not dinning in the restaurant. This is achieved with a branded website, strong social media presence, email marketing and digital ads when possible.

Some good starting points for achieving a digital experience and showcasing your restaurant vibe online:

  • Food Photography: High-quality, lick-the-screen photos of your food. They should be included on your branded website, on social, in emails, in your app, on third-party delivery sites and on Google. Google Business has an area to include food photography -use it. We recommend updating or rotating food photography regularly to keep the brand fresh and showcase fresh menu options. Post to social media a minimum of three times per week. Send weekly emails and update the website/third-party sites monthly.
  • Team Photos: Including in-the-moment snapshots of your staff enjoying themselves at work can help showcase your restaurants identity. Show off your team members working hard to keep each other and customers healthy. It is something to be proud of! Photos of the team boxing up to-go orders or interacting with third-party delivery drivers help create the branded experience and illustrate the customer journey.
  • Videos: Video provides the greatest reach and engagement on social media. Sharing fun short videos that feature your tasty bites, showcase your Rockstar team, and highlight your delivery services can help build word of mouth, while remotely delivering some of the experiential elements of restaurant dining that customers can’t enjoy in person right now.
  • Highlight Community Engagement: Regardless of their background or context, everyone’s year has been difficult, and people are dealing with a variety of issues. It’s important for your brand to be seen showing compassion and empathy during this stressful time. 

Restaurant delivery marketing operates on many of the same principles as more traditional marketing. Making sure that customers know who you are, the great food you offer, and that they can easily access your convenient delivery options will all work to secure loyal local customers.

About Balanced

Put simply, we are your partner. We help find balance in the crazy and exciting world of restaurant. Our clients are some of Austin’s favorite eateries. We help hospitality/restaurant clients with bookkeeping & financial serviceshuman resourcesmarketingoperations and all the fun in between.

Ready to get started? Us too. Contact us today

Digital Marketing Strategy for Restaurants: A Recipe for Growth Online

Digital Marketing Strategy for Restaurants: A Recipe for Growth Online

Restaurants and the internet have a love/hate relationship. The handy maps, easy online reservations and ALL the beautiful photos that guests post highlighting the food and stellar vibe – that’s the love. The feedback from 2007 that can’t be deleted, Yelp (yea, we said it) and the ENDLESS string of sites that must be updated when your hours change – that’s the hate for the internet. Emotions aside, few restaurants can succeed without a digital presence. So, what’s the recipe for growth online? One ingredient – consistency. It’s a consistent presence, consistent image and consistent communication. Here’s a glimpse at the Balanced digital marketing strategy for restaurants.

Consistent Presence

It may seem obvious, but the number one battle online is consistent presence. Google and Facebook are known for their constant updates that allow for a more personalized experience and better search results – great right? Kind of. Google and Facebook are CONSTANTLY cross-referencing other sites and when they find inconsistencies the pages are flagged, and you enter a blackhole of the unknown. Dramatic but true, Facebook Jail is real. Maybe you spell out “street” on Google but abbreviate it on Facebook to “St.” – they mean the exact same thing, but this inconsistency will impact searchability and any map associated with your restaurant. The internet thrives on consistency! Most of the time, tiny differences in address or phone number are the reasons for being a Page 10 Google search listing versus Page 1. Do people really click all the way to page 10 of a Google search? NOPE!

Our solution – have a dedicated database with the “master store listings” and use it daily. A simple Excel sheet will work well. Use this one source for EVERYTHING. Copy and paste the address and phone number from this database to Google, Facebook, Yelp, Twitter, Favor, EVERYTHING! It probably sounds ridiculous but one day when you’re setting up your Yelp page at 2AM, you’ll thank us for this. You may have one store now but the Entrepreneur in you has multiple locations in sight, or you may already have four locations and are working to build a corporate office. Either way, the “master store list” should live somewhere that EVERYONE in the organization can retrieve information from. Important note – designate an admin. No one else can make changes without the approval of the admin, no one.

Consistent Image

Consistent Image: Restaurant Website

The “who” that consumers see when searching for your restaurant is very important and must also be (wait for it) … consistent across platforms. We are firm believers in websites. Not all restaurants have a website but the best-known do. Websites can house all the important details of your concept – how it started, online ordering, menu (everyone is going green) and catering/events opportunities too. Google loves websites because they get “clicks” and Google lives on clicks. A Website develops the image of your restaurant that can transcend to social media and other platforms. A website is multigenerational while Facebook and Instagram speak to specific ages individually. We see a website as a foundation for not only the digital strategy but the overall success of the concept. Just get the website – you’ll thank us.

The website will be the main user of the “master store listings” document – the website will house that information for the world and potential guests to see. Ideally, changes made to the website would then be made to other platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Yelp and so one but that would make the internet too easy. Nope, most of the time, each platform must be manually updated so again, “master store list” document to the rescue.

The image the website creates can be shared on social media and other platforms. Photos are a major driver for traffic to the website, especially photos generated from guests. The fancy food blogger that posted about a recent visit to your restaurant will do wonders for your website and social media channels. User generated content or photos/posts from guests that visit your restaurant is the best way to grow a following and establish a consistent image.

Consistent Communication

A consistent image goes hand and hand with consistent communication. You must talk about your restaurant often and EVERYWHERE. Communicate through email, social media and community involvement. Find out who your best customers are and thank them for their loyalty. Communication is a huge factor in the success of any digital strategy. The more places you share your message (website, Facebook, Yelp, etc.), the more places Google has to cross-reference. Google gives consumers the opportunity to provide “feedback” on a business/restaurant listing with written reviews and photos. It is EXTRA SPECIAL important to respond to any feedback. Not responding is a sure-fire way to get you on Page 10.

Consistent communication doesn’t have to be repetitive. Reposting a photo the restaurant was tagged in on Instagram or sending an email about an upcoming fundraiser for a popular local charity keeps your fan base talking. Constant communication is necessary to build any relationship in life, restaurants and their following are no different.

If any word stood out to you here, it is probably “Consistency”. Your digital strategy is not something to take a chance on or let your neighbor’s “techy” son handle. Lots of boring data is involved in developing a digital marketing strategy for restaurants that works. Good thing the Balanced team thrives on data and is ready to create a digital strategy for you!

About Balanced

Put simply, we are your partner. We help find balance in the crazy and exciting world of restaurant. Our clients are some of Austin’s favorite eateries. We help hospitality/restaurant clients with bookkeeping & financial serviceshuman resourcesmarketingoperations and all the fun in between.

Ready to get started? Us too. Contact us today