You’ve successfully started using Facebook for restaurant marketing – you’ve set up your restaurant Facebook page, created engaging content and you continue to analyze the results and optimize your Facebook page. But you may still be asking yourself: How can I attract more customers to the Facebook page for my restaurant?
The good news is that even though your restaurant Facebook page is online, your restaurant exists offline. Don’t limit your ideas to only online drivers – go beyond just putting a link on your website and in your email signature and start promoting your page in your restaurant.
Your servers are the key to your page’s success. They are the face of your restaurant every day to every customer that walks through your door. Think much bigger than simply having them say “And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook,” (though they should also be doing that!). Make it engaging and interactive, online and off. The main idea is to give customers a reason to follow you:
- Offer a free appetizer or dessert if customers get on their smartphone right there and like your page while talking to your server about it
- If customers ask a server to take their picture, as they often do, the server can suggest they tag the Facebook page in the photo.
- Taking this idea even further, the server can offer to take photos of customers with a restaurant owned tablet or smartphone and post it right then and there to the restaurant’s Facebook page. It’s immediate, it’s engaging, it is interactive in the restaurant and online. Just remember, always ask permission before posting any customer pictures online!
- Feature your servers on your Facebook page as part of your content strategy – this gives them more incentive to encourage their customers to check it out and comment about them.
Printed materials should include your Facebook page. Include it on menus, matchbooks, business cards, bill inserts, receipts, takeout menus and bags, magnets, and even coasters. Anywhere you promote your restaurant brand is a great place to promote your website, Twitter page and Facebook page. Take it a step further than just including the Facebook logo – say “follow us” or even “tell us what you think” to drive customers to the pages and give them a reason to do so.
Show off your page. Do you have a waiting area or lounge area where guests meet up or wait for tables? This is a great place to stream your Facebook page on a flat screen (you can use an auto-refresh app to keep the page current), especially if you are posting current information/photos from that night. Think about the full customer experience: a hostess takes pictures of guests in the lounge, posts them to the restaurant Facebook page (with customer permission!) and the customers sees it right then and there. It is great motivation to like a page, tag themselves, and check in to share the fun with their followers.
Give customers quick and easy access to your page. It is estimated that 56% of Americans now own smartphones, making it easy to interact with your Facebook page right from your restaurant. But what about the rest of your customers? iPads for restaurants are a great vehicle for interaction – every table doesn’t need one, but having a few could give customers in the waiting area or lounge a great way to pass the time and to interact with your pages online.
Don’t be afraid to promote your restaurant Facebook page – make it interactive not just online, but offline, too.