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Two of the most loved things in our office are social media and food. That is why we decided to combine the two and take a look at how restaurants are using social media to gain exposure.
We found that many restaurants in the industry were not using social media effectively.
Lack of planning, inactivity or simply no presence at all were highlighted as reasons why food businesses were not receiving a great reaction online.
Although many restaurant owners are aware of the importance of using social media platforms, it seems that measuring the results gained by their work is a harder task.
The benefits may not immediately mean a direct increase financially for a restaurant but instead raising brand awareness in the community or improving reputation, ultimately benefitting the bottom line in the long term.
Facebook, Twitter, online review sites and blogging websites are the sites where most restaurateurs want their brands to be placed, as a good presence in those places can dramatically alter the success of the establishments.
Here are some examples of local and global restaurant brands who we think are a little bit dishy (in the social media sense that is)!
Nandos’ Portuguese peri peri chicken has become increasingly popular over the last few years and its Twitter page has certainly helped to create some buzz.
Their page is frequently active, running hashtag competitions and referencing topical news stories.
This has seen its follower count increase to an impressive 1.1 million, including a bevy of celebrity fans .
An example of a fun Twitter campaign run by the brand is #NandosSongs, where fans of the company reference their favourite dishes through song lyrics. This is one of our favourites.
The brand’s latest idea to keep its customers interested is #NandoGrills, a YouTube and Twitter campaign where celebrities are interviewed while eating their favourite meal at the chicken chain.
With over 29 million fans on Facebook alone, this fast food giant is one of the biggest brands in the world. As McDonald’s is such a well known chain it is understandable why it might have acquired such a great following globally.
The Facebook page is used to announce in store competitions, new products and post pictures of people enjoying their Big Mac or McFlurry.
In comparison to the chain’s in-and-out style of dining, its Facebook page focuses on the supposed quality of their food instead, with images of suppliers hand-picking apples in the countryside.
McDonald’s is cleverly using its Facebook posts to mirror their print and television advertising of a healthy, happy brand – and appears to be succeeding. You can read about our ‘Community Management Healthcheck Report’ for free, by clicking here.
Fellini Restaurant & Bar
Fellini is a local restaurant which is truly embracing the use of social media in its marketing strategy. Based in the Brandwatch HQ hometown, Brighton and Hove, the bar mainly uses Facebook to connect with its customers, announce promotions and show off it’s delicious courses.
Fellini’s most effective campaign is Secret Wednesday, where customers receive a 2 for 1 on main meals – but only if they arrive with a password that can only be attained from the Facebook page.
By changing the password on a weekly basis, customers are encouraged to return to the brand’s social media account to access the new code for their next visit.
The restaurant then uses this to use the Facebook page for further promotion, such as competitions, offers and other news.
The Italian eatery is also on TripAdvisor and has an impressive 4 and half stars. The online review site allows customers to rate their experience and give an insight to others who may consider dining at the restaurant.
Fellini has created such a good reputation on the site that they have been awarded a certificate of excellence, which they have placed on their website as well – integrating its social presence.
This Latin American restaurant wanted another way to stand out from the many other eateries in New York City (where you can also find a Brandwatch office) and decided to incorporate a social media campaign into its menu.
Comodo encouraged customers to Instagram their food before eating it and accompany it with the hashtag #comodomenu. This way future customers could see what the food was like before they place their order or even visit the restaurant.
By capitalizing on the social trend of instagramming food Comodo captured the imagination of their customers and also caught the attention of the press gaining brand awareness for their restaurant.
The customer’s own social networks multiplied and amplified this message too, providing free advertising for the brand.
So, there are numerous ways that local and global restaurants can use social media to connect with their target audiences.
It’s is important for eateries to manage their presence through monitoring online conversation. Negative reviews or lack of customer satisfaction could lead to a loss of revenue, so staying on top of your online presence is essential.