Congratulations! Your restaurant made such a splash in its original location, you’ve had the opportunity to branch out. That’s a major accomplishment in an industry that can be tough on entrepreneurs.
More locations means more chances to wow and win new customers with your atmosphere, service, and delicious dishes. It also means developing a marketing strategy that can scale with your continued success. Use these six tips to bring in the local crowds with each new opening.
If your restaurant has been such a huge success that it’s branched out into multiple locations, take advantage of your brand’s popularity. Be sure that your restaurant is recognizable whether it’s in New Orleans or New Bedford. Create a seamless experience on your website, in your establishments, and across all platforms by establishing clear brand standards. A brand guide helps local franchises build on your existing prestige to become a beloved classic wherever they spring up.
With that in mind, don’t be too heavy-handed with your guidelines. Allow room for your local marketers to create strategies that will speak to the people they know best – their neighbors. What flies in San Diego may not move people in Baltimore. As long as your local marketing strategies are aligned with the spirit of the overall brand and maintain the essential elements like colors, logos, and other fundamentals, allowing for distinctive local-level marketing can help to create a hometown feel in any town.
Trying to maintain multiple websites can get hairy. Building a multi-restaurant website makes updates, style changes, and general maintenance much more streamlined (and therefore much more likely to be undertaken in a timely manner). A single website also helps to ensure that seamless experience mentioned above.
To get the most out of your multi-restaurant website, it’s good practice to create a unique landing page for each location. Be sure to include geo-specific information for each location, and have those pages indexed so search bots can find them.
A bare bones landing page can look suspicious to a search bot and doesn’t add much in terms of SEO, so find ways to fill those pages with engaging local-level content. Embed reviews specific to each location, unique menu items, galleries of photos, and geo-specific news feeds that boost your local SEO and show your local pride.
Help locals find your restaurant wherever they are by including a location finder tool for each landing page. A good location finder widget will work across all devices and allow users to search by city or zip code. A really good widget will include automatic geolocation detection, handling all the work of connecting your new customer with your closest location with a minimal amount of work on their part.
Let’s go back to brand consistency for a moment. It’s a good idea to have a designated format for adding NAP data (Name, Address, Phone Number) across all of your online touchpoints. Even small variations can confuse search bots and make it more difficult for locals to find your restaurant. Including a template for NAP data in your brand guide is a great way to ensure that information remains consistent no matter who enters it.
At Morgan & Co., we’ve worked with some of the best restaurants in a city known for its restaurants, and we’ve been serving up successes. We combine cutting-edge technology, data-driven strategies, and creative thinking to create campaigns that put restaurants on the map.
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