One of the most widely affected industries by the rise of social media is the restaurant industry. Facebook alone holds thousands of restaurant fan pages operated by restaurant owners and managers all over the world. The rules of handling customers however, have changed with the advent of social networks. Come to think of it, it’s not just the hospitality industry that’s been affected. Businesses across various sectors have been compelled to change their marketing strategies in order to keep up with the shift from offline, to online.
If you’re looking to forge a presence for your restaurant on a social network such as Facebook, here are some smart recommendations you should consider. Note that these tips don’t just apply to the hospitality industry-other businesses can learn from these pointers and apply them too.
The ability for customers to interact with your restaurant allows them to leave any sort of feedback on your profile or page. This of course, presents a new problem. It’s always good to hear positive feedback from satisfied customers, but what do you do when you get negative feedback?
Foolish as it may seem, the best thing you can do is not to delete that negative review. Instead, address it, and show to your fans or followers that you’re willing to make up for any problems your customers may have had during their dining experience. This is something you’ll have to learn to deal with this; after all, no restaurant is perfect.
Always Respond to your Followers and Fans
The idea behind social networks is interaction. That means you will have to engage with your fans or followers. Don’t just open up an account, invite people to “like” you and settle for sending out a constant stream of restaurant updates and promotions.
Instead, interact with your customers. Answer their questions, address their concerns, and show that you’re actually willing to talk with the people on your social network account. Even if it’s just a simple Thank You, customers will like that you actually took the time to respond to them, much in the same way that they took the time to post on your page or profile.
Showcase What you Have to Offer
Restaurants are specially suited for social networks, most notably Facebook, because these sites offer the opportunity for them to show their food and other services in highly advantageous ways. Obviously, it’s a must for you as a restaurant owner to take advantage of this feature. Create unique content, such as videos, tutorials (recipes are awesome) and lessons on the origins of your restaurant and food that you serve.