4 Tips To Develop Strong Restaurant Email Marketing
Every once in awhile someone writes an article declaring that email is dead. The average consumer is consuming media and communicating via social media platforms more and more. Inboxes are overwhelmed with spam, junk, and unopened emails. So why should restaurants worry about collecting email addresses from their guests?
It’s all about economics
Once you have a guest’s email address (barring them changing it) you have a free and simple way to share meaningful info with them. If your sales have been low and your restaurant needs a traffic driver, having a large email database to reach out to can be game changing. You don’t need to spend money on social media marketing campaigns or other forms of paid advertising. Just send out one email with a great offer and you could see your restaurant full again.
Develop a strategy
Before you start building your email list you need to develop a strategy. Think about why someone would want to sign up for your email list: email-only special offers, first glance at new menu items, updates on events, etc. To help you brainstorm on those special offers and events, take a look at this helpful calendar for all the special days of 2017. Think about what your restaurant could do for a teacher on Thank a Teacher Day, or a buy one get one offer on Best Friends Day. The possibilities are endless.
At this point you should also decide what information you want to ask from your guests. Just name and email, or also birthday, age, and gender? If you are collecting birthdays along with emails you can do exclusive birthday offers for your email list. Email is also a great way to get customer feedback. Read our article on How To Get Customer Feedback For Your Restaurant to learn more.
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Choose the right system
There are countless email management options out there, all with different prices and different capabilities. This is why you develop your strategy first! Now you know what you need out of an email marketing platform and what bells and whistles to look for. Some POS systems have a CRM built into it which you can utilize as your email management platform. Others integrate seamlessly into third party platforms. Be sure to check your POS system capability with the platform you want to use for emailing.
Organize your list
The real key to a strong email marketing strategy is segmenting. Depending on what type of information you collected you can segment by age, gender, location (if you have multiple), and more. Certain offers will be more enticing for single males ages 20-35, while women ages 40-65 will be looking for something else. Making segment-specific offers will increase your redemption rate and engagement.
Email is the quickest, easiest, and cheapest way to re-engage guests and develop loyalty in new ones. A simple sign up at the restaurant or on your website can help you build a database that will protect you from slow periods and keep your restaurant profitable and popular.