10 Local and Mobile Marketing Strategies for Local Restaurants

Intertwining both local and mobile marketing strategies can do wonders for local restaurants that don’t have several locations. In fact, 80% of people search their mobile devices for nearby restaurants. If your mobile marketing strategy isn’t optimized for local customers, now is the time to do so.

Prospective diners primarily search for restaurants online, whether it’s to find a phone number, address, or menu. In the digital age, your restaurant has to be where the customers are. If your restaurant isn’t online or doesn’t have this information listed you could be losing a considerable amount of business.

A mobile marketing strategy is an important factor when it comes to bringing in new customers. These 10 local and mobile strategies are tried-and-true methods to boost restaurant profits that you can implement today.

Image courtesy of  BoostLikes

Image courtesy of BoostLikes

1. List Your Restaurant For Search

Ensuring your restaurant is listed on every social media platform that incorporates nearby search increases the chances that your restaurant will be found online. Here are the places your restaurant should be listed on.

  • Yelp
  • Google Maps
  • Facebook
  • Foursquare
  • UrbanSpoon
  • OpenTable

These platforms incorporate geographic proximity when users search for restaurants nearby or in specific neighborhoods. Not having your restaurant listed means lost business from nearby prospective customers.

Expert Tip: Be sure to visit these sites and make sure crucial information like your restaurant’s address, hours, and phone number are up-to-date. Old addresses, wrong business hours and phone numbers can frustrate prospective customers and makes it difficult for new customers to find you. Ensuring your information is updated allows for new customers to find and contact your restaurant quickly.

2. Use Mobile Loyalty Programs

Today’s customer is always on the go and looking for hassle-free ways to be rewarded by the businesses they frequent. As our world continues to become more digital, customers yearn for digital solutions to loyalty programs. They are accustomed to being digitally rewarded for their loyalty by big companies like Starbucks and expect a similar experience with their favorite restaurants.

Clickdaily’s loyalty program is the solution, allowing small restaurants the ability to implement a customized loyalty program for their customers in the same fashion big corporations can.
Studies show that 87% of customers say they want loyalty programs and 62% think the businesses they’re loyal to don’t do enough to reward them. Providing a loyalty program to your customers increases business by 23% and makes them feel appreciated, a factor that may increase return purchases.

Clickdaily’s loyalty program allows new customers to find your restaurant via GPS. New and current customers can earn points by sharing photos of your restaurant’s food and decor on social media and by writing reviews for your restaurant. Points can be redeemed for specials determined by the restaurant. The restaurant also has the ability to decline reviews and redemption of points as it deems necessary.

Clickdaily’s loyalty program is unique in that it rewards customers for sharing their experience at a restaurant, which is much more powerful than rewarding customers for spending money. Content on the internet has the ability to spread like wildfire. A negative review online could deter hundreds of prospective customers from entering your business. Those who share their positive experiences at your business help show your business to the world in the best light possible and should be rewarded for doing so. Many loyalty programs make customers feel that they need to spend a lot of money to get rewarded. Clickdaily’s loyalty program doesn’t. Rewards big and small are accessible to all who share their experiences.

Image courtesy of  Mark Dalton

Image courtesy of Mark Dalton

3. Blog Away!

Blogging is one of the simplest ways to reach your local audience and build a community online. Starting a blog for your restaurant is an outlet for you to assert your food prowess and create content that your customers want to share.

Always be sure that your blogs create a foundation for conversation. Write in a way that invites people to comment on your blog. Engaging with your followers will help get your restaurant on people’s radar.

Expert Tip: Include recipes, videos, tips, funny stories, and behind the scenes images for a healthy mix of content people will want to like, share, comment, and enjoy.

4. Make Use of That Email List

Email marketing may have been one of the first ways we marketed in the digital era. Although, it’s an older method of online marketing it still is effective in bringing customers to your door.

The key to email marketing is to make sure your emails are specific, relevant, and never sent too often! Send emails that specifically talk about your food whether it be special dishes or drinks for the week. Keep emails relevant to what’s happening at your business such as live shows or events. Never send more than one email a week and keep your emails on a consistent schedule so your subscribers know when they’ll hear from you.

5. Create Ads That Use Geo-Targeting Technology

The online world is global. This sometimes makes it difficult for local restaurants to market themselves online specifically to locals.

This is where geotargeting ad technology comes in. It allows your restaurant to be exposed to people who are nearby or searching for a place to eat in your area. It’s a smarter way to advertise because you no longer have to wonder if your ads are being viewed by people close enough to visit your restaurant. Let’s face it, if your restaurant is in New York and someone in California sees your ad there’s a good chance they won’t be able to make it in time for happy hour!

There are plenty of platforms where you can utilize geo-targeted ads. Google Ads, AdWords, Yelp Ads, Facebook Ads, and Twitter Ads.

6. Smarten Your Online Ordering

People are increasingly using their mobile phones for their everyday needs and more. One of these needs is ordering food in a quick and simple way. The digital age has made the competition more accessible so if online ordering is hard to find on your website customers will quickly find other options.

Image courtesy of  Street Fight

Image courtesy of Street Fight

If you have a dedicated online ordering panel integrated into your website, make sure it’s easy to find. A large “order online” button your website’s landing page directs users to order online in a simple and easy fashion.

If your customers order via Grubhub or Seamless be sure to include menus on your website. Users like to skim through a restaurant’s menu before deciding to order. The menu should be clean looking and easy to find on your website.

7. Make Sure Your Website is Mobile-Friendly

The days of not having a website optimized for mobile are long over. Google has changed its search algorithm to reward websites that are tailored for both the large and small screen.

This means if you don’t have a dedicated mobile site for potential customers searching for you on their smartphones they may not find you. A mobile-ready website is essential to a mobile marketing strategy.

8. Be Active on Social Media

It’s not enough to have a social media account or two with a few posts a month. Social media is a proven vehicle that can move your business, but only if you use it correctly! It is not enough to be present, your restaurant has to be active.

Here are the three key social media platforms your restaurant should be active on: Instagram, Facebook, and, Twitter. If your restaurant doesn’t have a presence on these platforms create one today. If your restaurant is present on these sites there are a few ways to transform your restaurant’s social media presence from present to active.

Create a social media plan that includes posting regularly each week.
Use high-quality professional images to show your business in the best light
Create engaging posts that invite people to like, comment, and share.
Mix it up. Post quality images of your food and any upcoming performing musicians, recipes, funny stories, behind-the-scenes and staff videos, more fun content relevant to your restaurant.
Monitor your social media account daily for activity. Be sure to interact with those who provide positive and negative feedback.
Be consistent! Post and check up on all your accounts regularly. Set up a scheduled time to do so if you have to.

9. Get Alerted When Your Restaurant is Mentioned Online

Google Alerts allow you to monitor when your restaurant gets mentioned online without having to compulsively check your each one of your social media accounts. Setup is easy. Simply type in your restaurant’s name (and any other keywords or competitors you want to keep an eye on) and you’ll receive a notification when mentioned online.

This tool is free and essential to keeping abreast of your restaurant’s online presence.

10. Take Advantage of Third Party Delivery Services

If you’re located in a mid or large-sized city, you may be able to use delivery services like Postmates and UberEats. As a restaurant, it’s an opportunity to expand your customer base while providing an easy ordering alternative.

Expert Tip: When it comes to your mobile marketing strategy, it’s always about making the experience easy for the consumer. Finding your address, phone number, and business hours should all be easy to locate. If ordering online with your business isn’t easy, customers will flee. Using an online delivery service can smooth out the kinks in the delivery process, leaving your customers with a satisfying experience.

Ghislain de Noue