9 Best Restaurant Marketing Ideas To Recalibrate Business
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9 Best Restaurant Marketing Ideas To Recalibrate Business

As of 2023, there are almost 1 million restaurants in the United States, from fast-food chains to fine-dining establishments. 

With this number of competitors, how are you going to set your business apart from them? 

Yes, you may already have penetrated the market, but having an up-to-date list of restaurant marketing ideas can still make a difference. 

From restructuring your online tools to boosting your visibility, seeking influencers for collaborations to adapting technological innovations like a QR code menu software are some of the marketing initiatives we’ve prepared for you. 

So, let’s get down to business and recalibrate your marketing efforts to position your restaurant at the top. 

Restaurant marketing statistics: What do the numbers say? 

restaurant marketing satistics
Statistical presentation of restaurant marketing

Before we dive into marketing initiatives, you must first understand what’s going on in the industry you’re a part of.

The National Restaurant Association (NRA) has released its 2024 restaurant marketing statistics in the food and service industry. 

Here are important key findings:

The food service industry is projected to reach $1 trillion in sales this year, making it the first in the history of the U.S. F&B industry to have that number. This signifies the growing demand for food-related business across nations. 

  • 9 in 10 adults are recorded to enjoy going to restaurants as it allows them to enjoy their comfort food of its quality that they can’t easily replicate at home. 
  • Growth in the workforce is also projected to grow by 200,000 jobs, with a total employment of 15.7 million by the end of 2024

Now, let’s look into the revenue prospects released by Statista.

  • The global market size of the food service industry by 2028 is expected to reach more than $4 trillion–almost 50% growth since 2021. 
  • For full-service restaurants, the estimated market size is estimated at $1.5 trillion in 2023 and is forecasted to grow by $1.8 trillion in 2030

How to recalibrate your business for success: 9 best marketing ideas for restaurants

Dicussion of marketing ideas
Owners planning their marketing strategies

Invest in building an exceptional online presence

We bet you already know how crucial it is to have a strong online presence and how it is one of the key factors of a restaurant’s success.  

One of the platforms you might have is a website. Your mission now is to improve it to get better traction.

Producing high-quality photos and videos is one way to showcase the beauty and artistry of your dishes and your restaurant. 

You can film short videos of your chefs cooking, taking your guests on a tour of your stunning ambiance, or highlighting local farms from which you source your ingredients. 

Other than that, set the mood of your website based on the restaurant theme. You have to give your readers a peek at what to expect from your establishment. 

Seek influencer collaborations

Morning Consult, a data and analysis provider, reported that 50% of millennials trust the recommendations from influencers, and about 33% of Gen Zs have bought products based on an influencer’s reviews.

This only supports the effectiveness of influencer marketing. 

So, it would be a strategic move if you’re interested in venturing out to do collaborations with influencers.

But there are a few things you must consider:

  • Don’t chase the follower count

The bigger isn’t always better. Look for influencers who resonate with your target audience whose content aligns with your brand’s niche. 

A micro-influencer with a highly engaged audience might be more effective than macro-influencers with less engaged following. 

  • Analyze influencer’s engagement

Speaking of an engaged audience, the criteria you must look into are likes, comments, and shares an influencer’s posts typically receive. 

This indicates a genuine connection with their followers, leading to potentially better engagement with your brand promotion. 

  • Partner with influencers who genuinely love your brand

People are quick to recognize false recommendations. That’s why it’s essential for you to seek influencers who enjoy and frequently dine in your restaurant. 

Their passion will translate into more credible and successful advertising. 

Form strategic partnerships with other industries 

Partnership with other businesses
Business proposal for partnerships

Strategic partnerships with other industries, such as hotels, bars, spas, or cultural institutions, are game-changers for your business to offer package deals or cross-promotional campaigns. 

This way, you’ll be able to tap into their customer base while providing added value to their guests. 

For instance, you could partner with a nearby luxury hotel to provide exclusive dining experiences as part of a weekend getaway package, enticing guests with the promise of a memorable culinary journey. 

By aligning with these complementary businesses, you can elevate your restaurant names or brands’ positioning and attract new customers, fostering long-term success in this competitive market. 

Improve your social media marketing 

2024 social media statistics have recorded 5.17 billion social media users worldwide, and every user spends 143 minutes per day. 

This is how glued users are to social media networks, making it a part of their day-to-day activities. 

With such a number, it is only wise for you to improve your marketing strategies when it comes to your social media platforms.

You must understand that social media is a conversation, not a monologue. So, the first thing you must consistently do is respond to comments and messages promptly, answer questions, and participate in relevant online communities. 

With this, you’re communicating with your followers, making your social networks engaging. 

Next, run contests and giveaways to encourage audience participation. You can also ask them to share their own photos and videos related to your business. 

It creates a sense of community and potentially increases brand identity.

Lastly, stay up-to-date with social media food trends and strategies that you can adapt to your business accordingly. This will further improve your promotional strategies.

Personalize marketing efforts through emails

Having personalized marketing emails can significantly improve your sales.

One effective tool you can use is a restaurant newsletter. You can cohesively tailor your content based on customer data across multiple touchpoints. 

But remember that the key to successful personalized marketing is striking the right balance between relevance and respect for customer privacy. 

Make sure that you obtain consent from the customer before collecting and using their personal data for marketing purposes. 

Additionally, respecting customer preferences and providing options for communications is essential in maintaining trust and goodwill.

Engage in community activities

What’s a better way to connect with people than interacting with them personally?

Getting involved in local community activities through sponsoring charity events, participating in food festivals, or hosting culinary workshops can boost your restaurant’s visibility.

This demonstrates your commitment to giving back and resonating with socially conscious diners. 

Further, you can source your ingredients from your local farmers and producers or feature regional specialties on your menu, which can significantly help foster a sense of pride and connection among residents. 

Host exclusive events for better restaurant marketing initiative 

Having exclusive events is a cornerstone of marketing, providing patrons the opportunity to indulge in a unique experience. 

You can offer an intimate setting for guests to celebrate special occasions, like birthdays, anniversaries, or corporate gatherings. 

Aside from that, a chef’s table could also give your customers an opportunity to interact with the culinary team and witness the creative process firsthand. Whether seated in the kitchen or at a designated table, guests can enjoy a close-up view while savoring the freshly made dishes.

These events not only generate additional revenue but also foster loyalty among attendees who appreciate this exclusivity.

Implement digitalized loyalty programs 

Digitalized loyalty programs are powerful tools for your business to build customer relationships, encourage repeat visits, and gain valuable customer data.

For you to implement this successfully, here are some tips we’ve consolidated:

  • Choose the right platform

Select a digital loyalty program that aligns with the needs and your restaurant goals. Look for features such as mobile app integration, customizable rewards structures, and robust analytics capabilities to track customer behaviors and preferences. 

  • Streamline sign-up process

Make it easier for guests to join your loyalty program by offering a seamless sign-up process. You can have this on your website, mobile app, or a QR code menu that ensures customers can enroll quickly and effortlessly. 

  • Personalize rewards

Tailor the program rewards to reflect the preferences and behaviors of your customers. 

Offer incentives such as discounts on future purchases, complementary menu items, or exclusive access to private events based on each customer’s history and spending habits. 

  • Promote referral incentives 

Encourage existing members to refer friends and family to join your program by offering referral incentives.

Provide the referrer and the new member with bonus rewards as a token of appreciation for their loyalty and advocacy.

Collaborate with local artisans 

This provides an opportunity for your business to showcase the richness of your community and differentiate your restaurant from competitors. 

To effectively do this, strengthen your partnership with nearby farmers, ranchers, and producers to source fresh seasonal ingredients for your menu. 

Highlight locally sourced meats, seafood, fruits, and vegetables to support the local economy and ensure the highest quality flavor in your dishes. 

Other than that, you can commission local artists to create custom artwork or installations that reflect your restaurant branding and aesthetic. You can have a mural, sculpture, or photography series that can add a unique touch to your space. 

Including technology in your restaurant marketing ideas list

Of course, we can’t exclude the valuable use of restaurant technology in enhancing your marketing efforts.

Here are several ways you can leverage technology:

Mobile-friendly website

Make sure that your website is optimized for mobile devices to provide a seamless browsing experience for smartphone users. 

Incorporate features such as online reservations, menus, and contact information to make it easier for customers to engage with your business. 

Email marketing automation 

Implement automation software for your email marketing to streamline communication with your customers and deliver targeted campaigns. 

Segment your email list based on the data you gathered about their preferences and behaviors.

This will make it easier for you to send personalized messages, promotions, and event invitations to drive engagement and loyalty. 

Tableside technology 

Equip your staff with handheld devices or tablets to streamline your workflow. 

This provides them with access to real-time information about your menu and the overall description of your restaurant, making it easier for them to answer questions from your guests.

QR code menu ordering system

Improve traditional printed menus with QR codes to showcase a dynamic and interactive dining experience. 

You’ll be able to update menu items, prices, and promotions in real-time, making it cost-effective. 

Just make sure to put instructions on how to scan a menu QR code to cater to those who haven’t had any experience using it.  

3 reasons why you need a QR code menu technology to enhance your marketing strategies

Restaurants like yours are continuously looking for creative methods to improve the dining experience of customers as well as stand out in a crowded market in this tech-driven society. 

With many advantages, QR code menu technology is a potent solution that may greatly increase your marketing strategies.  

Enhanced customer engagement  and convenience 

This technology offers a contactless and interactive dining activity. 

Customer can simply scan the code with their smartphones, accessing the menu instantly on their own. 

The interactive nature allows features like high-resolution photos, detailed descriptions, and even dietary restrictions, all readily available at your customer’s fingertips. 

Real-time updates and marketing opportunities

Its incredible flexibility makes updating pricing, introducing seasonal dishes, or highlighting special promotions made it easier. 

All you need to do is update your virtual menu which assures to save you money and minimize waste in your restaurant due to pages of reprints. 

Further, you can put these QR codes on your marketing materials like flyers, table tents, or even social media posts that directly drive traffic to your online menu board. 

Data collection and valuable customer insights

You can learn more about the preferences and behavior of your customers by keeping track of the number of scans. 

This data can be used to identify popular food items, evaluate the effectiveness of your menu, and target particular marketing initiatives. 

Just think about being able to see which items are most popular and shared! 

With this information at your disposal, you can better cater your promos and offers to your target audience’s needs, boosting customer satisfaction and revenue.

MENU TIGER: A QR code menu technology provider for your business

Interactive menu software
MENU TIGER homepage

One thing is for sure: You can only maximize the capacity of having this technology if you choose an extremely high-quality provider that goes beyond what is expected of it. 

With MENU TIGER, a digital menu QR code is not just limited to providing seamless order and payment processes but is designed to make your overall services and operations even better. 

Here are some of the features it can offer to you: 

User-friendly customizable website builder 

This software provider lets you customize your website according to your liking. 

You can decide on the color scheme you’re going for, the information about your restaurant that your customers need to connect with you, and photos and videos to entice them to try your offerings. 

A good thing about this is there’s no need for complex coding, you just have to put the details, and it automatically generates a website for you. 

Personalized digital menu QR codes 

Generate your personalized menu QR codes, where you can change patterns and colors and add your restaurant’s logo for more coherent branding. 

You can display these QR codes on table tents, counters, and signboards with the design of your choice, tapping into the sensory experience of your customers. 

Efficient e-payment alternatives 

Payment processes made it easy as MENU TIGER food ordering software offers PayPal and Stripe integrations for cashless transactions, eliminating the need for waiting in line or being accommodated by your staff. 

Impactful email marketing campaigns

You’ll be able to send out personalized emails to your patrons about your menu updates, technology additions, promos, and deals with its capacity to generate email lists of your customers. 

This makes it easier for you to know who is your target market and align your marketing initiatives based on the data you’ve gathered. 

Other useful software integration for your restaurant marketing ideas 

Another advantage of this smart menu software is its never-ending aim to provide everything businesses, regardless of size, assistance to streamline the workflow. 

One way to guarantee this service is through their Zapier integration for restaurants.

With Zapier—a web automation tool to connect web apps and services, you’ll be able to expedite and automate your online work process without coding. 

You can maximize its capacity to self-operate things like your social media, project management, emails, and other administrative tasks. 

Re-equip your restaurant marketing ideas with MENU TIGER

It’s no news that the trends and innovations in the F&B industry keep on evolving. 

A restaurant once highly rooted in a traditional setting is slowly diving into a more modern approach. 

With that, having an updated set of restaurant marketing ideas will definitely be a great way for you to respond in this changing environment. 

So, let’s explore the new ways you can promote your business and how MENU TIGER QR code menu software can assist you in implementing these. 

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