Many restaurants have come to harness the power of social media. They realize that this is one of the best ways to connect with prospective diners. But guess what? It doesn’t have to stop there. Restaurants can also use social media to their advantage once people are in the seats.
There used to be a time when sitting down for a meal was an opportunity to converse and enjoy each other’s company. While this can still hold true, things have changed. Now a majority of people spend most of their meals on their smartphones. Eating alone has almost been normalized by the accompaniment of a smart phone.
Social media use in restaurants is on the rise. From a restaurant’s perspective, this presents a big opportunity. Knowing that people use social media while dining, restaurants should consider the following:
1. High Speed, Free Wi-Fi
Restaurants with high speed, free Wi-Fi have a much better chance of customers posting and correctly tagging or checking in to your location. And here is why: people don’t want to burn through their data. They are much more likely to spend time online when it’s fast and free.
2. Take it to the Next Level
Rather than stick with the basics, it’s time to take the social media experience to the next level. Imagine what a Tweetwall could do for your restaurant.
With this, you have the opportunity to engage with diners in a real-time, customizable environment. For example, you could provide coupons to people who share their location on social media. Not only does this increase engagement, but it adds excitement to the dining experience while also boosting business. Diners will want to see their posts up on the screen, multiplying the engagement that your brand and/or hashtag will get.
3. Get Involved
Here is something you can do: take photos of your best dishes, share it on social media, and let others provide feedback.
Along with this, encourage visitors to take photos of your establishment for online sharing. If you want to give this strategy a boost, provide a discount to diners. For instance, offer a five percent discount for posting an image of your establishment, the food, or some other aspect of the restaurant.
Tip: if you plan on doing this, let the person be 100 percent honest with the information they provide their audience. You shouldn’t attempt to sway the “review.”
The Future is Bright
With one-third of Americans using their cell phone during dinner, restaurants have the unique opportunity to connect with these people while they dine.
There is no slowing the growth of social media. As more people use top social platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook, restaurants will have additional opportunities to increase engagement, sales, and revenue.