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It is well known in the restaurant industry that one of the most striking differences between independent and chain restaurants is the sense of urgency placed on analyzing financial information. Chain restaurants tend to have faster reporting at the end of financial periods, along with more frequent reporting and analysis. Additionally, they tend to monitor (and take action on) a greater number of key performance indicators. Those factors give chain restaurants an edge at squeezing more profit from each dollar in revenue.

A new gap is emerging between chains and independents and this time the independents are in the lead when it comes to engagement with social media marketing.  In a recent blog over at ThriveSpot, we discussed the use of Twitter as a social media outlet and how independent restaurants were outperforming chains in all Twitter statistics according to a study by Restaurant Sciences.  The statistics don’t look that much different for other social media accounts either.  Independents are stepping up and interacting with customers via social media accounts such as Twitter, and Facebook and even getting involved with check-in sites like Foursquare. 

According to The Mobile Movement Study conducted by Google, 65% of people using smartphones to connect with the internet are visiting social media sites.  Social Media interaction is becoming a big differentiator between more successful independent restaurants and those less evolved.   Given how many people are interacting with social media sites, connecting your accounts to your mobile website is one of the easiest no-cost ways to reach your audience!  Wanta Thai is a great example of a restaurant who actively engages with their customers via social media.  In the picture below notice how they placed social media links right at the top of their mobile website for easy interaction. 

What social media accounts are you engaging most with?  Are you ready to take them mobile?

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