Marketing your restaurant in times of COVID-19

Restrictions are lifting, and eateries are now allowed 10 people dining in. But this is not worth the while of some restaurants, who normally budget for a lot more than that.

The hospitality industry has borne the brunt of social distancing measures, with many restaurants and cafes seeing decreases in customers and revenue, and some even closing their doors.

Here are a few marketing tips to promote your business during this health crisis, and find creative ways to boost your sales.

  1. Perfect your presentation

Make the presentation of the dishes match the flavour!

This is an opportunity to perfect your signature dishes and deliver them to customers’ doorsteps. However, for many high-end restaurants, this era of takeaway food is unprecedented. If you’ve got the right food packaging, your presentation will still remain high quality.

Some high-end eateries have already done this – they’re turning favourites into delivery dishes in our home compostable, sustainably sourced sugarcane bowls.

Read about do’s and don’ts of takeaway here.

  1. Promote your business

Make it easy for customers to find you and order.

Making your website as user-friendly as possible is a must. Focus on getting your menu online so people can easily access your takeaway.

Load your takeaway menu to the website

If your takeaway menu is different to your dine-in one, make sure you mention this on the website. Ideally, install a pop-up notification that tells visitors to the website that you are open for business within three seconds of them arriving at the page.

Tap into your delivery service partner’s promotions

If you are struggling with the delivery side of business – if your website doesn’t support online ordering or you can’t get orders out there fast enough – consider partnering with a delivery partner. This will help access a larger group of customers seeking food delivery.

BioPak has a partnership with Deliveroo which includes exclusive discounts on packaging for Deliveroo restaurant partners. This also allows customers to choose ‘contactless’ delivery, meaning the food will be left on the doorstep with customers notified that it has arrived.

Activate Google and social media channels

Ensure you’ve claimed and optimised your Google MyBusiness profile to help locals find your business. Add your takeaway menu, enticing food photography, and the link to your website to make it more effective.

Social media also offers an opportunity to promote your new takeaway or food delivery option. Publish an announcement post and ask your customers and fellow local businesses to support you by sharing it. Use the hashtag #supportyourlocal to make your posts more visible to Instagram users.

Optimise your digital spaces

Whether it’s your blog, website, or third party sites where you’re listed, make sure they’re fully optimised. Refine your SEO and B2C marketing strategy to ensure your content is as visible as possible. Update old information (this is important and often gets overlooked!).

Community partnerships and PR

There is a lot of community spirit right now. If you’re a sustainable business, you could receive free support from local organisations such as Plastic Free Places or media outlets. Reach out to your local newspaper and let them know you’re still operating and have launched takeaway or a food delivery service. Local stories and good news go a long way right now.

Make your brand stick

Make the most of your delivery bag by popping in a copy of your menu or contact details on a fridge magnet so customers can easily re-order. You could even include a special offer to encourage this, or a personalised note thanking them for supporting your business.

Communicate health and safety standards

In times like these, people are hypersensitive about health and safety measures. It can be a good idea to communicate your practices to your customers to avoid concerns.

  1. Think outside the box

How can you use this situation to define your business’s uniqueness?

This is your moment to define what sets you apart from other businesses. Ask yourself:

  • Brand: Have you chosen the best packaging for your signature dishes? Does the packaging reflect your business ethos?
  • Alternate revenue streams: Can you sell cook books, gift cards, or host live-streaming cooking shows?
  • Further cost savings: Have you exhausted all cost efficiencies, e.g. could a compost bin help you reduce your general waste bills?

We can survive this if we stick together and get creative.

 

Information taken from BioPak’s website.

Read about why certifications matter and if online petitions help ban plastic on our blog.

 

Post by Tallis Baker

Planet Friendly Packaging acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land on which we work.

Our thoughts go out to everyone affected by COVID-19. Stay safe.