Social media plays a huge roll in our landscape. Understanding your message and your channels can make or break your business. This episode reviews the larger players in the social media game, and tips on how you can take advantage of these outlets, and leverage them to increase sales and presence.
Across all channels, social users reached about 2 billion last year, and will grow this year by 2 1/2 billion.
Everyone loves to hate Facebook, it’s the super addictive platform that is hard to stay away from. What does it mean to your audience? The connections you keep through Facebook are important, and they give you a platform to engage and share mind space with hundreds of listeners. This is an absolute must-have for restaurants. The key is brilliant imagery to draw users in.
Other important tactics include opt-ins for special previews or meet and greets with chefs through the events module. Take this further with exclusive events help listeners feel like they have important, exclusive access to your brand.
Facebook ads can be dialed in by geographical targets, say within 5 miles of your business – which creates a unique opportunity to engage with guests in your exact area.
Twitter has morphed over the years to an advertising, media rich platform – but where brands do very well is via simple engagement with check-ins, event hashtags.
Twitter allows your brand to engage with consumers directly without them having to follow you. Great examples are the Cochi taco truck that used Twitter to create a flat, transparent platform with minimal work. Feedback and communication are easy and engaging with minimal effort. Hashtags also allow a unique opportunity for you to find other brands and consumers to engage with.
End users have unprecedented direct access with staff at the company who have power to create change. This also gives consumers a great customer service outlet to handle bad customer experiences and resolve them much more quickly and efficiently.
Perfect for food professionals, this photo driven outlet is a huge asset for restaurants. Creating a crave-ability factor that will resonate, ideally around the lunch and dinner hour. Timely posts that beg users to eat with their eyes. Using posts of hot sellers or over-stocked items at the right time will help suggest high inventory items.
Similar to Twitter, the use of hashtags allows you to find other users and followers extending far beyond your geographic reach.
Younger demographics are shifting from Facebook to Snapchat. Despite an early, unfortunate bad rap, Snapchat now has 100 million people use Snapchat every day. Statistically, video views now supersede Facebook vide views (over 1 billion snaps sent every day). This is the up and coming platform for younger users who will be top spenders in the next 5-10 years.
In terms of advertising, Snapchat boasts a 5 times higher click through rate than other social advertising platforms. If you are looking for a smart place to move some of your ad spend and increase ROI, Snapchat is a good bet.
One of the most quickly adopted social platforms that has become a very popular service. Users can “pin” items to their walls, but beyond soccer moms and crafty folks – brands are now engaging with their key demographic. Pinterest builds backlinks which help your search engine rankings.
With 1.3 billion users, YouTube cannot be ignored as a social media powerhouse. There are 300 videos uploaded to YouTube every minute. Content strategies include video how-to recipes (don’t worry, they’ll try to make it and then come in and buy the real thing). Smart phones have capable camera quality to do a short video on YouTube, you don’t need super high production videos.
To boot, Google owns YouTube and putting content out on YouTube can really help with your search engine optimization.
One of the most beautiful tools for restaurant operators. Yelp is word-of-mouth marketing. Every single time we’re traveling, we look at what restaurants are on Yelp and their ratings. This platform is also extremely transparent (second only to Twitter), where owners are allowed to respond to reviews (good and bad). Yelp star ratings can and do effect revenue for businesses, so building up this stream is imperative for restaurants.
Advertising Yelp (for example, 10% off if you check in on Yelp) in your business can really help drive business and increase star ratings.
Having one singular point where you can direct all of your followers to is key. This is your digital front door to your business, and it needs to look up to date and be mobile ready. Be sure to include your address and hours, and include great photos.
A great first step to ease into social media if you are not familiar, is to ease into this by creating your own personal profiles on these services and get acquainted with them. Then pick one to three of these platforms, and become an expert. Don’t bite off more than you can chew, focus on growing one platform at a time – see some growth and engagement and then work your way up slowly. The growth takes time, perseverance and consistency. Just keep on posting and stay true to the goal!