Reported by foodem.com, the online wholesale food marketplace-
It’s time for restaurants to get with it and take their online marketing efforts to the next level – go mobile! Integrate mobile into your marketing plan and capitalize on those who spend their time ‘on-the-go’, which is the majority of Americans.
Seemingly, most restaurants and dining establishments have socialized their businesses by adhering to consumer demands of engaging through a website and social media platforms. At minimum, most have three to four social profiles; Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and/or Google +. Anyone will tell you, this is a great way to broaden your customer base, market and promote your events, be the bearer of information, and develop lasting and nurture existing relationships. The thing is – most are still thinking in terms of computer and laptop screens.
Mobile devices such as smartphones, e-readers and tablets are becoming increasingly efficient, on their way to replacing both computers and laptops due to device demand and steady usage. Currently, there are over 242 million U.S. smartphone users. That’s nearly 78% of the population. By 2016, smartphone users will rise to an estimated 259 million.
What does this mean for restaurant? It means that customers want to interact and engage with your brand via their mobile devices. These devices will remain ever prevalent, so it’s up to you to get creative, revamp your marketing efforts and meet your target audience halfway. Let your customers know you are aware of their wants and needs and that you know how to reach them with the information they are seeking.
Here are a few mobile marketing tactics to get you started:
- Create a mobile website or optimize your current website for the best possible mobile experience. Suggested tips are: place contact information, menus and other important information at the top, avoid the use of Adobe Flash and use features specifically designed for mobile devices such as digital coupons.
- Use search engines to your advantage. To start, add your listing to Google Places, Bing Local and Yahoo Local. Furthermore, don’t forget sites such as Yelp, Superpages and MerchantCircle. This will not only help mobile users find your restaurant, you will also reap the benefits of better search engine optimization; increased traffic. Increased traffic = new business, more business and repeat business.
- Mobile and social media go hand-in-hand. Mobile users have access to social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare… As we all know, people share their experiences online and use social media sites as the vehicle. Essentially, this is free publicity, but free does not insinuate good publicity. Be vigilant when it comes to the comments that your diners post and share with others. Whether they are good or bad comments, make a concerted effort to respond. This tactic will boost your credibility and portray a transparent presence.
What other mobile marketing tactics have your implemented? Which have worked best for you? Tell us about your experiences, successes and failures.