There is fierce competition in the restaurant business in Singapore. This means that you need to up your marketing game in order to stand out.
If you’re like most restaurant owners, there are hardly enough hours in the day for you to stay on top of running the actual operations of your establishment, let alone time to focus on marketing.
But someone has to do it, so consider outsourcing some of the more resource-intensive operational tasks to experts like Alsco. Alsco can manage all your linen, uniforms and washroom services so you can get on with growing your business.
So where do you start?
With more than 90% of Singaporeans using the internet every day, you should consider using online platforms to promote your business. Here are some surefire promotion ideas for your restaurant.
Promotion Idea #1: Create a Website
Almost everyone is using the internet these days. Creating a website allows you to reach out to millions of potential customers, including people overseas planning to visit Singapore soon. You can use the website as your landing page to post promotions.
Make sure that your website is responsive and mobile-friendly. People love websites they can navigate through easily. If they want to make an order, it should be as easy as a few clicks or taps on their smartphone. Optimise your website for mobile devices as most people use their phones to browse the internet.
When designing a website, consider these important factors:
- Loading time: Ensure that your website takes the shortest time possible to load. People lose patience for slow loading websites very quickly. One study found that half of all internet users expect a website to load in under 2 seconds. If it takes more than that, they will leave the site.
- Website information: Provide reader’s with adequate information. Let them know where to find your restaurant, your hours of operation, the services you offer and your contact details.
- Keep it original: Mirror your restaurant’s services on your website. Do not promise services that you cannot offer in your restaurant. Include original content on your website and refrain from copying content from those businesses that you envy. Use their ideas, sure, but put your own twist on it.
Promotional Idea #2: Promote Your Restaurant Aggressively on Social Media
Social media is a great platform to connect with customers and flaunt your business. More people are using various social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Take advantage of these to promote your restaurant and connect with potential customers.
There are various benefits of using social media as a restaurant promotion idea:
- You turn customers into your advocates
- You can target your customers directly
- It’s a free form of marketing
- It helps improve loyalty and trust in your brand
A staggering 77% of Singaporeans are likely to use social media daily. This means that 4.4 million citizens are on social media browsing every day. Even if you have a business website, you can use social media to build an online presence and increase your consumer base.
Use it to post eye-catching photos, messages and videos of your food and dining experience to keep your customers and potential diners engaged.
Your customers can use social media to give their feedback and ask questions by commenting on your posts, helping you monitor the levels of customer satisfaction with your menu, your service and your prices.
It is also a way to help you handle complaints efficiently. You can address the complaints immediately and offer a solution. This shows that your readers’ opinions are valued, creating customer loyalty.
Promotion Idea #3: Get Your Staff Smart Uniforms
When your staff members are smartly dressed, they look more professional and neat. This builds a good image for your business. It also boosts their morale and happy employees mean happy customers.
Rely on Alsco’s Managed Uniform Service to supply you with clean and fresh uniforms for your employees.
Promotion Idea # 4: Diversify Your Menu
Your menu plays a big role in making your business successful. People are very specific about what they want and if they don’t find it on your menu, they will leave. Consider things like healthy diets, allergies, quality sourcing and sustainability.
Although it is not easy to satisfy everyone who comes to the restaurant, consider the vital factors. Keep your communication channels open to determine the type of food your customers like. Once you understand their needs, promote your restaurant aggressively.
Promotion Idea #5: Mix Music with Your Food
Music not only enhances your restaurant’s ambience but it also helps accompany and enhance a meal. Food and music go hand in hand. Music creates energy and an atmosphere that helps develop food flavour. Just don’t make it too loud!
Good food can become exquisite when paired with the right music. Playing the right soundtrack compliments a meal, making your dining experience better.
Promotion Idea #6: Create a Loyalty Program
A customer loyalty program is another great promotion idea for your restaurant. It’s a sure way to ensure that your satisfied customers become repeat clients. When you offer customers rewards based on the amount they spend and the frequency of their visits, you will be able to keep these profitable customers loyal.
Make use of different types of incentives such as cash-backs, physical rewards, freebies and discounts. The key thing is to determine how both your business and the customers will benefit from the program. A loyalty program will:
- Give your customers a reason to come and eat at your restaurant again
- Help you build a customer database
- Help you enhance your relationship with your customers
- Increase the frequency of your customers’ visits
Promotion Idea #7: Get Listed on Google Maps, Yelp and Local Listings
Another great promotion idea for your restaurant is to ensure that you get listed in all local business listings. If it is free, take advantage of all the channels that can help you generate more leads and traffic.
There are still many people who go through traditional local listings. However, things have gone digital and now people are getting their businesses listed on Yelp and Google maps. You should do the same for your restaurant. If you don’t know how to, hire a freelancer to do it for you. This will not cost a fortune.
Given the technological advancement in Singapore, more people will be able to see your restaurant on Google Maps. People also use GPS directions to get around and if your restaurant is on Google Maps, they are likely to see it on their GPS. New customers might be tempted to check out that new restaurant that seems to be on their way.
Remember to include your hours of operation to let your potential and existing customers know when your restaurant is open. Take advantage of enlisting with Yelp and Google Maps to attract more customers.
Promotion Idea #8: Host a Charity Event
You can increase your sales and give back to the community by holding a charity dinner. This can be a weekly dinner event or you can make it a monthly thing. Your service will remain the same. The only difference is that you will donate a percentage of your sales to a local charity.
People go out of their way to have a meal at a restaurant if it means a charity will benefit. Choose a popular charity to ensure that patrons are willing to dig deep. Think of local schools, neighbourhood development funds or kids’ programs.
Change charities every time to keep things fresh. Also, collaborate with the chosen charity to help promote the event. This is a great way to get the word out about your business.
Promotion Idea #9: Make Things Lively with Live Music
Let your customers be entertained by a live band as they dine. Give back to the community and support local bands.
You can even introduce another twist. How about karaoke nights? Just be sure to find the best music to balance with the customers’ dining experience.
Promotion Idea #10: Buy in Bulk and Be a Master in Upselling
Offer your customers unbeatable deals. For example, if they spend above a certain threshold, they qualify for a discount. A good example would be: buy three orders of wings and qualify for a free beer.
Also, learn a few tips on upselling to ensure you are doing it right. Customers appreciate it when you go the extra mile to suggest something on the menu that they wouldn’t have thought of ordering. Offer them some helpful suggestions but be careful not to annoy them in the process.
Some good upselling ideas include:
- Leaving the customers’ bills open a little longer until they are ready to pay
- Paying attention to your customers’ cues
- Placing your menu items strategically to persuade your customers to order more complimentary items
The Bottom Line
As you promote your restaurant, remember that ambience is paramount. To enhance your customers’ experience, provide them with clean and fresh linen. This includes napkins, table overlays, tea towels and glass cloths. It is the small things that transform your restaurant from a normal eatery to a fine dining experience.
The best part is that you do not have to spend a fortune to invest in good linen. Wherever your restaurant is located in Singapore, Alsco’s affordable fully-managed laundry service will take care of it.
Our program offers linen supply, regular cleaning, pickup and delivery services as well as inventory management.
Contact us for a customised, obligation-free quote that meets your specific needs.
Photo courtesy of Pexels by Quang Nguyen Vinh
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons by Philip McMaster