8 Ways To Promote Your Restaurant’s Reopening
The restaurant industry is easily one of the biggest contributors to the world economy. Unfortunately, it was also one of the most affected industries in the pandemic.
This had consequences for restaurant owners and their customers alike. People view these spaces as a melting pot of cultures. And as gathering spaces to share life’s milestones.
They offer ways to explore new worlds through cuisines. And spaces that allow communities to form and celebrations to occur.
That is why governments are now prioritizing reopening these spaces in their bid to bring normalcy back.
However, it is not going to be so easy to get back to normal. Customers have gotten accustomed to a new way of living, and the apprehensions from the COVID-19 pandemic are still not gone.
So it’s more important than ever for restaurants to invest in brand building, marketing, and promotional campaigns to ensure their reopening is a success.
Why Promote Your Restaurant’s Reopening?
Yes, it is true. It will be harder for small businesses to get customers through the door. And operation costs are only on the rise. But this is definitely one of those cases where you’ll get an ROI that will be worth all your efforts.
How do you do that, though?
Well, thankfully, customer sentiment is on your side now. More and more customers are feeling that they are not eating out as much as they want to. All you have to do is pivot their attention towards you and ensure you are worth all this wait.
An important part of this process is to ensure that social distance, hygiene, and safety measures are all in place. And clearly communicated.
Promoting your restaurant’s reopening is a great opportunity to share how safe dining out is and make people realize that you have more than just a “We’re back” announcement to offer.
Ongoing messaging and outreach is necessary to pull in a wider audience and make up for the lost time.
This means a constant flow of ads, information blasts, and connecting with your audience to ensure your restaurant reopening is a success.
Marketing Ideas to Promote your Restaurant’s Reopening
Remember that the restrictions are not lifting up for your restaurant alone. Many restaurants – small and big are going to be vying for the same customers’ attention. If you want to stand out and make the customer choose you for their dining experience, you have to be innovative and creative.
You need powerful promotional ideas to advertise your restaurant opening in the best possible way. Kimp is a design partner to small businesses worldwide and we are happy to share our top ideas for your restaurant’s reopening and make it a spectacular success.
1) Announce the Reopening via online and offline channels
Starting with an obvious but important step. You have to announce your restaurant’s reopening, but not just with a newspaper advertisement or a social media post. It has to be a recurring announcement across all possible platforms.
Do not differentiate between offline and online channels. Go all out. Bombard the customer with images of your restaurant, and your delicious menu items, so that they stay in their mind for a long time.
Some of the ways to announce your restaurant’s reopening include:
- Newspaper Advertisements in your local and/or regional paper. Choose the format based on the audience you’re trying to reach.
- Distribute engaging flyers in your local neighborhoods, offices, and retail stores.
- Billboard announcements if you want to attract a larger audience
- Announcement posts across all major social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Snapchat. You can run paid promotions too to make sure that you’re targeting those who may not follow your accounts.
- Comparative Ad campaigns between you and your direct competitor to grab the attention of other brands’ loyalists as well. The more the merrier, right?
- Visual content stays in customers’ minds more so than text. Stick to minimal text and choose to let your brand images, logo, and attractive flyer/ad design shine through.
- A colorful poster is bound to catch someones’ attention more than a plain black and white text announcement.
- Use your brand colors in your announcement designs to create brand awareness and generate brand recall. The former will help you with those who aren’t familiar with your restaurant. And the latter will remind old customers of your offers.
2) Update Exterior Signs and Interiors
For many restaurants, the biggest advertisement real estate lies in their name board, storefront, and signage. With tough times, you must leverage every advantage you have. Including your restaurant’s exterior.
With so much to juggle during your reopening, we know that you’re trying to keep marketing expenses as low as you. So let’s work with what you already have!
Is your restaurant in one of the busiest neighborhoods in your town? Update your storefront signage to reflect your new opening hours, dine-in options, and any offers you may have for your reopening.
Even if your restaurant isn’t in a place that gets a lot of foot traffic, you can install a NEON sign above the building, or in your window, to show you are going to be back in business soon. It’s okay if you are not open now, the signage can still serve as your personal billboard.
Going beyond the storefront, you can redesign the restaurant interiors too with subtle COVID-19 related updates. This includes posters encouraging social distancing, explaining hygiene measures, sanitization checks, etc.
You have to display them to win the trust of your customers, anyway. So why not use them to market your restaurant’s reopening too? If you’re currently only handling takeaway orders, you can target those customers. Update your front window, as well as the portion of the restaurant in which orders are picked up with your promotional posters so that customers know you are getting ready to reopen for dining in too.
Did you know that McDonald’s’ redesigned its logo to raise awareness on social distancing in its stores?
Revamping your logo may not have come to mind, but it’s definitely a way to get your customer’s attention. It could be as simple as adding an element, or symbols. Or playing with your color palette. You can also try these ideas to update your branding, display boards, and other signage.
With these tactics, you can get the attention of passersby, similar to billboards, without having to foot that bill too.
3) Social Media Revamp
4 billion people are using social media today. Even with the smallest engagement rate, you can reach a wider audience on those platforms than through any other means.
Updating your social media profiles with reopening information is vital to send a clear, consistent, and strong message to your customers that you are back in business.
But you also need regular content on social media for the best results. Consistency in branding and posting is important to get good results on your social media campaigns.
Content Ideas to ramp up your Social Media game include:
- Change your cover image with the reopening date announcement on Facebook and Twitter.
- Post spruced up food images from your restaurant with the reopening date to give your customers visual proof of what they are missing out on.
- Add a booking calendar with the available tables and dates to generate FOMO and get customers to call in for their spot. You can couple this with posts sharing the number of tables remaining and with messaging that encourages people to reserve before they miss out!
- Upload a walk-through video of your new layout, sanitized kitchen, and other spaces and show your customers that the restaurant is safe to visit.
- Share sneak peeks of new dishes on the menu with discount offers for the first few bookings.
- Announce a loyalty program. This could be as simple as getting an appetizer or dessert free after X number of purchases.
- Upload cooking videos from your Head Chef inviting customers to join them during your reopening. Videos featuring people and showing faces (and their dynamic expressions) tend to have a higher reach.
- As much as possible, you must stick to visual content. Even on platforms like Twitter and Facebook that emphasize images less, posts with images, videos, and other graphic content for higher engagement rates.
- Videos also make the customers stay longer on your profile, making it reach more people. Just remember, you need to keep the videos short and engaging.
Piada used the fun GIF above with a QR code to offer discounts to the first few customers to book tables as part of their reopening campaign.
4) Update third-party platform listings
As a restaurant owner, you’re probably using a few third-party listing platforms to enable bookings and reach a wider audience. Updating the new images of your restaurant, menus, and timings here is very important.
These listings bring you a lot of business and also have many subscribers. Any misinformation here will not be good for your restaurant’s reopening. This includes your local Google My Business listing as well.
Treat these applications and websites like you would Social media, and keep the information current and consistent. Ensure that any change in branding is updated here as well.
Kimp Tip: Shoot new photographs of the space for these listings so that the customer can see the steps you’re taking giving them a safe and enjoyable experience. It doesn’t have to be expensive. You can use your phone and let your editing team touch up and brand your images. If you don’t have one, try Kimp.
Our full-service graphic design teams can help you out. Or if it’s video editing you need, we have video design teams too!
5) Revamp Your Website
Most third-party listing sites and your social media profiles redirect your customers to your website for detailed information. If you don’t have one or just have something basic, it is time for an upgrade.
In the digital age, a business without a website does not exactly inspire trust. And building trust with your customers plays a big role in making your restaurant’s reopening a success.
And when it comes to your website or landing page’s design, bear in mind that customers lose interest quickly with a boring layout. So, you need a website with a design that reflects the standards customers can expect from you.
You need your website to align with your promotional campaign. And that means:
- Adding updated banners with the reopening information.
- Including slider images to show the revamped restaurant.
- Updating copy to reflect your new operational hours, safety standards, and other mandatory details.
- Including details on promotional offers, loyalty programs, and discount codes.
- The banner or slider on your website does not have to be an image. You can use videos to engage your customer for a longer time on your homepage and improve your ranking in search engines.
- Ensure that you have a dedicated landing page for all ad-redirected traffic to capture leads and improve your customer database. Check out our guide on building a landing page that gets results.
6) Invest in Email marketing
Owning your audiences’ information is such a powerful tool in any marketing campaign, but especially for your restaurant’s reopening promotion. We will tell you why.
Customers prefer having some social proof before making a purchase. So a lot of your new followers on social media and those you’re targeting through campaigns may be hesitant to walk in on the first day. To encourage them, you can share and post reviews and user-generated content that highlights all that you offer.
But, what about customers who have dined in with you in the past? Chances are they’re more likely to dine with you again. But they just need to know when you’ll be open.
Sending them regular newsletters on your journey to reopening can help keep you top of mind and get them coming through your doors again. You can also offer exclusive discounts for your newsletter subscribers. And if you’d like to build up that email list, try announcing your offers on social media. And encouraging sign-ups to access the discounts.
Check out some newsletter designs by Kimp to see how engaging, attractive, and branded newsletters can make a difference to your campaign.
7) Use Label and Package design
During the pandemic, most restaurants pivoted to the delivery space to keep themselves in business. You may also have rolled out meal kits, a ready-to-cook range, and added many other products to your portfolio.
The good news is that these activities did not just help you stay afloat during these testing times. They will also power your restaurant’s reopening campaign.
You can design new labels and packages to announce your restaurant’s reopening and turn that delivery clientele into dine-in clientele too.
Kimp Tip: The updated package and label designs also make great Instagram and Facebook posts. Try repurposing your designs for different purposes to tap into multiple audience segments on and offline.
8) Blogging to improve Search Engine Rankings
As a restaurant owner, we know that blogging is probably not your strong feat. It might not be on your radar at all. But having a blog section that talks about food, new menus, events at your space, and much more can be a great way to connect with your audience.
Not just that, blogs and long-form content help you with your SEO efforts and make you visible to many more people on the internet. So, if you are planning to reopen, it is time to start blogging.
If you feel that you don’t have time to write, you can enlist the help of food bloggers and Instagram influencers to guest post and generate content for you. That will help you get the word out and dish out content on your website on the regular.
- Long-form content works, but it is hard to get customers to the end where your CTA lies.
- The trick is to break the long chunks of text with engaging graphics, images of your restaurant, stylized food pics, to name a few.
- If you have a guest blogger, you can use the images from your own restaurant instead of stock images to lend authenticity to the content.
- Blog images can also be repurposed on other social media platforms to advertise your restaurant reopening.
Get Kimp and get Stylized Images and Videos to promote your Restaurant’s Reopening
Running a restaurant during the pandemic, preparing for the reopening, and keeping up with changing industry standards and government restrictions is A LOT of work in itself. Now, if you add the responsibility of handling every part of your promotional campaigns, it is just too much.
Something’s got to give.
So get design off your to-do list. Hire a team that can help you design all the graphics, images, banners, flyers, videos – and more! – that you need. Kimp is happy to be that team for you.
We offer flat rate design subscriptions so you can get all the creatives you need without blowing your budget.
Don’t take our word for it. Sign up for the free trial today and watch your marketing campaigns go from small scale to the big leagues.