What Social Media Are you Using At Your Restaurant? FohBoh Wants to Know

Hi all,

I am compiling a list of social media that operators are using now to manage their operations, manage their online reputation, promote to the "crowd" and drive traffic to the door. So, what are you using?

My sense is that once we have a list we can discuss their relative value and socialize the results.

Thanks for your help.




Michael


Tags: Restaurant, FohBuzz, FohMedia, media, social media, social media for restaurants

Views: 88

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Michael:  I just saw this post today (Dec. 21).

 

My clients are mostly smaller/medium restaurants that are new to social media.  I create 'starter' kits for them - setting up the profile, gathering followers and following appropriate local Tweeters.  I also start them off with a series of tweets/posts that will help them start a dialog (relevant 'voice' for their business).  I then either continue posting for them or train them how to do it themselves.

 

But the social media that I use and recommend are the basics: Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.  Twitter & Facebook are obvious - most of their customers use it.  LinkedIn because the chef and/or owner profiles have recently become important, and they help past employees stay in touch with a constantly moving management pool.

 

The other tool I recommend is Yelp.  Yes, really.  We have an active community in the Pac NW that uses is properly.  Also Yelp has a lot of free tools that help owners 'see' what is going on with their online presence.  (We have a couple of great Yelp community managers that are very visible).

 

Other than that, I'm sorry to say, is just a lot of static for the small/medium restaurant owner.  Foursquare Gowalla, etc. are probably much better for an already very active and larger restaurant.

 

Contact me if you have questions.  I am interested to hear what this survey shows us.

I work with small restaurants as well; social media creates an interesting catch-22.  The owners tend to think "why should I pay someone else to set this up; we can do it ourselves."  Well, yes, they can of course.  But they (generally) aren't.  Or if they did, they often don't keep it up.  With all the avenues out there for social interaction, I think the key is picking one or two platforms to start, and keep it current.  It's a far worse thing to start an account and basically abandon it than to not be on that media at all. 

Once they commit to keeping one form up to date and do it successfully, they can move on to another.  I know there are people who will sell an aggregator or multiple platform responder, but that can miss the point in my book.  Take linking your Twitter and Facebook feeds, for example.  If you post the same message to both, you are either shortchanging your FB (by limiting yourself to 140 characters) or forcing your followers to click the link when you push an entry out to the 420 character FB limit.  Would you run the identical ad on TV as radio?  Of course not - different market segments are being targeted.  The same is true of Twitter and FB. 

For me, the idea is to get on a platform and use it to build relationships.  Get people involved and talking, don't just dump specials on them.  Say interesting things, comment on posts and get them to respond.  It is SOCIAL media, after all...

Time is always a consideration, not just for restaurant people but any small biz owner.  As opposed to blogging (since many people don't think they can write well enough or often enough to support a blog) - try video blogging.  I've rec'd it to several clients; yet to have a taker as they are intimidated by having their face out there on the net.  Yet their pictures are on the website, they greet customers in person - it really personalizes them.  Their character traits (good and bad) can come out on video and people will recognize them more often.  Once a week, make a dish on camera.  Show a kitchen trick.  People will love it!

This whole topic is something I'm passionate about - the tools are there for restaurant folks to build their brand and become fixtures in their communities.  Getting them to see it that way and not as another hassle and/or timesuck is another issue entirely... ;-)

In my talks with restaurant owners and managers, Social Media is "too new" or several say they won't pay for it, citing the expense. I counter with what are you using (advertising and marketing wise) ? I further ask, what are you expecting to get that Social Media can't get at a much lower investment (and really time) cost.

 

I also have asked why all the "coupons" and the ads in the "throw away" newspaper inserts ? I have seen these for years. The response is always "It's what the customer wants (discounts and coupons); we're under contract, on why

they advertise in the throwaway papers. I also know restaurants that will pay thousands of dollars in radio (sometimes television) each year, expecting the same result.

 

I remember(motivational speaker) Tony Robbins saying something about a bug on the windshield. I think the same analogy applies to restaurants and  the lack of accepting Social Media in mainstream marketing efforts.

First of all we set up the basic social media sites and linked them together. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and a blog. We manage their sites, posting  interesting events, beautiful pictures of the scenery, pictures of the guest and employees and videos of the work being done. This helps to keep Cooks Lobster House in front its customers. It keeps the customer interested and feeling that they are a part of the business.

Joining community organizations and giving your time to help the the area that you do business in can generate big rewards. Cook’s Lobster House was awarded the Mid Coast Maine Big Business of The Year Award in 2010. That award came about because Social Media Connected kept Cook’s Lobster House connected with the chamber and promoted Cooks as deserving the award. Cooks deserved the award but would not have been recognized if they had not been involved and committed to the community. Networking, meeting the people that also do business in your area can lead to great contacts and increased business traffic.

One of the things that I have found that has helped to drive traffic to Cooks Lobster House is showing the area that surrounds them including the natural beauty and the local businesses that the guest might be able to enjoy while visiting Cook’s.

The use of blogs for highlighting the walking trails of the area draws a great deal of interest as well as the blog that lists the hotels, campgrounds, and Inns in the area. Give your prospective customer more reasons for using your business. Make sure to provide links to and from all of your sites so you don’t lose them.

People love to belong, to have a sense of being an important part of something. To help the guests of Cook’s feel that sense of importance we created a club that gives rewards and incentives for frequenting Cook’s. This is a great tool for Cooks because it allows the employees and management to get personal with the guest, learning their names and obtaining their emails for newsletters.

Social Media is being social. It takes commitment and a belief that you have a product that the public wants. Engage and show off your company as much as you can through the many channels available to you and don’t forget to LISTEN to your customers.

Social Media means interacting with guest and community both on line using the latest sites like Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, Linkedin, Youtube, Flicker and email lists. Social media also refers to face to face interaction with the guest and community. Joining local organizations like the chamber, business groups and associations.

For more information or help with your social media setup visit my site at: Social Media Connected

Michael,

 

Social media is a powerful tool in marketing, especially since everyone is on the internet now. I wouldn't recommend just one marketing channel online, but I would recommend a variety of use to help make the brand or service more familiar with the audience. Recently, I just went onto youtube to watch some spoof videos with some friends and FastCasual came up in an advertisement before the video (i've heard of fastcasual, and this imagery made it more comfortable for me to join). Also, There are plenty of ways to draw in more foot traffic to a concrete location, with Facebooks "checking-in" application you could try to make a contest like Dunkin Donuts did with offering coupons to those who just "check-in" and create more awareness of your website or retail location. Its all about create brand ambassadors, not just brand loyalty, but people who sell your product simply because they love it.

Not sure if this helped answer your question. The most you should do to promote your brand or service is to talk about it on all platforms of marketing. (twitter, facebook, linkedin, forums, blogs, whatever gets the audience minds engaging in your product.

 

Regards,

 

Norm E.

RSS

Advertisments

 

DEPARTMENTS

Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries

Smartbrief

Restaurants may feel the pinch of pricier coffee later this year

Prices for arabica coffee futures hit a 26-month high amid a drought in Brazil, which produces a third of the world's coffee  -More

McDonald's rules out all-day breakfast in push to simplify

McDonald's breakfast menu accounts for 25% of the chain's U.S.  -More

Easy ways to use 5 uncommon spring greens

As light, crisp greens arrive at farmers markets and grocery stores, chefs are finding creative ways to add them to spring me -More

JOBS & CAREERS

Posting a job or finding a job starts here at FohBoh. Call us about special $25 posting packages to syndicate across all major jobs boards.

National News

National Restaurant Association Offers Training DVDs on Harassment Prevention, Social Media Use, and Customer Service

The National Restaurant Association has released three new DVDs that offer best practices in dealing with harassment and discrimination, customer service training, and the first of its kind video guide on the use of social media.

Yum! Brands Reports First-Quarter EPS Growth of 24% Excluding Special Items

China Division System Sales Increased 17% with Operating Profit Growth of 80%; Yum! Reaffirms Full-Year Guidance of at Lea

Souplantation & Sweet Tomatoes Certified As Nation's Largest 'Green' Restaurant Chain

National Group Salutes Country's Only Large Restaurant Group to be 'Certified Green Restaurants®'

National Restaurant Association and EatStreet Release Online Ordering Guide

The National Restaurant Association and EatStreet have released a free educational guide focusing on online ordering and emerging restaurant technology trends.

Boyd's Coffee Launches Single-Cup Coffees For Retail And Foodservice

The coffees come in a variety of roast levels and include organic and Rainforest Alliance Certified™ options: French No. 6®, Red Wagon® Organic Coffee, Good Morning™, Hi-Rev® (delivers more caffeine), and Lost Lake™ Decaf Organic Coffee.

CROWD FUNDING

If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.

TED TALKS VIDEO

TED: Hamish Jolly: A shark-deterrent wetsuit (and it's not what you think) - Hamish Jolly (2013)

Hamish Jolly, an ocean swimmer in Australia, wanted a wetsuit that would deter a curious shark from mistaking him for a potential source of nourishment. (Which, statistically, is rare, but certainly a fate worth avoiding.) Working with a team of scientists, he and his friends came up with a fresh approach — not a shark cage, not a suit of chain-mail, but a sleek suit that taps our growing understanding of shark vision.

TED: Michel Laberge: How synchronized hammer strikes could generate nuclear fusion - Michel Laberge (2014)

Our energy future depends on nuclear fusion, says Michel Laberge. The plasma physicist runs a small company with a big idea for a new type of nuclear reactor that could produce clean, cheap energy. His secret recipe? High speeds, scorching temperatures and crushing pressure. In this hopeful talk, he explains how nuclear fusion might be just around the corner.

TED: Sarah Lewis: Embrace the near win - Sarah Lewis (2014)

At her first museum job, art historian Sarah Lewis noticed something important about an artist she was studying: Not every artwork was a total masterpiece. She asks us to consider the role of the almost-failure, the near win, in our own lives. In our pursuit of success and mastery, is it actually our near wins that push us forward?

TED: Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces - Matthew Carter (2014)

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books -- remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

© 2014   Created by FohBoh.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service