Restaurant Marketing Strategies to Adapt to COVID
Posted on: January 20, 2021 by RMS Hospitality
In the early weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic, many restaurant industry clients were forced to close their in-house dining rooms or even shut down completely to prevent the virus’s spread. For many restaurant owners, this also meant scaling back any marketing campaigns and stripping priorities down to business basics, like Restaurant Insurance Program coverage, payroll, and utilities. Now, almost a year into the pandemic, restaurants are slowly beginning to reopen their doors to the public, bringing guests back to inside dining. However, some are still operating with caution, only offering takeout and delivery options for the time being. No matter how your client chooses to operate, one of the biggest challenges is creating restaurant marketing strategies to appeal to diners who have spent the last ten months or so at home.
With customers still cautious of heading outside, restaurants can no longer rely on foot traffic to keep their businesses running. Instead, restaurant owners need to market their businesses to customers in post-COVID ways, including the latest technology and an emphasis on being tech-savvy.
Here are some ways owners can adapt their restaurant marketing strategies to the new normal of a COVID-19-affected world.
Go Online for Food Delivery
During the pandemic, people started to go online to order from their favorite food spots. Food delivery apps, such as Uber Eats and GrubHub, saw an immediate increase in sales in the early days of COVID-19. Using a food delivery app may sound like a trend, but it’s one that will stick around as the new normal and helps clients keep their grills burning and lights on.
If a restaurant has an online presence, food delivery apps can increase its revenue and convert in-house diners into online diners. Offering to-go ordering or online delivery is essential in keeping people engaged and aware that the business is still open. Plus, they can bring their favorite dishes home.
Clients should include online menu optimization as part of their marketing ideas moving into 2021. Most people who visit a restaurant’s website are looking for the menu to decide whether they want to eat there.
Menu optimization acts as the best marketing tool that lets restaurants offer their customers an interactive way to see what’s new with the food and the business. Clients should retool their online menus to feature deals of the day, the latest seasonal updates, and fresh features, like ordering meal kits or how to connect via social media.
Update Social Media Use
Most restaurants already utilize the various social media platforms to get their name, menu, and deals out there, such as Facebook and Instagram. However, newer, more interactive social media platforms can boost revenue and attention. 2021 may be a good year to test different social media channels as part of a client’s COVID-19-era marketing strategy.
Restaurant owners, chefs, and line cooks from all over took to TikTok and Snapchat to create their recipe and cooking videos, so this might be the perfect opportunity for clients to jump on board. Another great visual tool is YouTube to show videos like these and Day in the Life videos, showing how the pandemic has changed the way the restaurant operates.
About RMS Hospitality Group
At RMS Hospitality Group, our expertly crafted policies are written specifically for the hospitality industry. We offer custom-tailored solutions to meet any venue’s specific needs. For more information, contact our experts today at (888) 359-8390.
Posted in: Restaurant Insurance