Common Mistakes for Restaurant Social Media

There are plenty of things you need to keep in mind when running a restaurant and it can be easy to dismiss things like Social media when you have to worry about building renovations, menu overhauls and staffing issues.

If you cut through the noise, it all centers around one thing – the customers.  There’s no doubt that they’re the most important part of any successful restaurant. If you have numerous customers that are dissatisfied with the service (for one reason or another), it will have a major impact on the future of your restaurant. Aside from not wanting to return, they will likely end up telling others about their poor experiences.

With that said, what are some effective ways to both draw customers in AND best handle communications with those that are already customers? There are plenty of online/offline restaurant marketing ideas you should consider, but if you dismiss social media as part of your toolkit, you are simply leaving money on the table.

Here are some common mistakes you should avoid along with some suggestions to incorporate in your restaurants marketing mix.

Using Social Media for Downtime

Even though social media is one of the most effective marketing tools for a business, it’s easy to get distracted by it. What was originally a means for you to market your content, can easily become a source of downtime that makes it hard to focus on the objective.

For example, what if you were sharing your content on Facebook or Twitter, but ended up constantly having a casual conversation with one of your followers instead? Of course, though, that’s not to say there’s anything wrong with using social media to market your content or respond to interaction.

However, you always need to be sure you’re focusing on the objective. As a way to make your usage of social media more manageable, you should consider creating separate pages. For example, you could have a Facebook page which is for social interactions, while the other is strictly for business purposes. Overall, keeping a balance between social media and downtime, is an essential part of using social media for marketing.

Don’t Flip Your Lid

When marketing on social media, it’s a guarantee that people are going to respond if they find your content interesting. With that said, remember that not everyone is going to be pleased as well. In fact, those moments are what matter most. Anyone can take a compliment with grace, it’s how you handle criticism (justified or not) that will have the biggest impact to those watching you. If you receive a negative comment on a public forum that seems so out of left field, your impulse might be to lash back out at them, but remember that this isn’t just a conversation between you and this person in a back alley, these social hills have eyes.  Instead, walk away for at least 1 hour – perhaps ask someone else their opinion (offline) and then respond by killing them with kindness.  Later on you will feel much better about it.

Keep Your Voice Heard Consistently

This could really be done in two parts. Firstly, one of the most common mistakes that restaurateurs make on social media is simply letting it fall to wayside. Having sporadic posts leaves an impression of laziness or lack of commitment to your customers.  Customers will take notice if you haven’t posted in 4 months and they will wonder why you had a pattern of posting every other day and all of a sudden stopped.

If you worked hard to get some followers and engage customers in your content, don’t leave them hanging. Instead, if you simply don’t have the time to keep your content fresh, perhaps enlist one/some of your trusted millennial employees as a content creator. Offer them a small monetary incentive of course for keeping it going and meanwhile while allowing them to be part of the business which they can mark as part of their resume .

Maintain Your Tone Consistently

On the flip side of this, be sure to monitor your social teams work. It is important that your voice isn’t just consistently being heard but that the tone remains consistent for your customers as well. If your social media is being run amuck by goofball teenagers, it might lack depth and lose credibility – be sure to guide your younger employees patiently as to the values of your business and the type of tone you want to be known for to customers and everyone wins!

For more information about the importance of restaurants and social media and restaurant marketing tips in general, feel free to contact us today at 9Fold. We look forward to hearing from you.