Guide to Restaurant Email Marketing for Enhanced Customer Engagement

Many restaurant, cafe, and take-out eatery proprietors avoid sending out restaurant email marketing campaigns. Some people believe that using emails to promote their services is outdated and hence unproductive. Others prefer Facebook and Twitter because they believe these social media sites reach a far larger audience (Try these tips to increase your Social Media Marketing outreach). We have some exciting news for you!

Email has approximately three times the number of users as Facebook and Twitter put together.

In 2014, there were around 4.1 billion active accounts; by the end of the decade, that number is predicted to rise to nearly 5.6 billion.

Every day, 91% of consumers check their emails.

9 Steps to a Successful Email Marketing Campaign for Restaurants

Email marketing for restaurants has become one of the most popular methods of communicating with customers. Whatever discounts and loyalty programmes your restaurant offers, make sure to publicise them effectively. And restaurant email marketing is a great way to communicate with and engage your customers.

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To conduct a profitable email marketing campaign, follow these steps for effective email marketing ideas for restaurants

Compile a subscriber list

Finding subscribers for your restaurant email marketing campaign is one of the first stages. These subscribers could be those who

Arrive at your website Make sure your sign-up form is visible on your homepage, menu page (if you have multiple pages, add the form to each one), and reservation page.

Visit your restaurant and, along with your check, bring a feedback/suggestion form. These forms can encourage your customers to join up for emails.

Consider ordering takeout or delivery : Put your menu with your takeout and delivery orders, along with the URL to your website, and invite folks to go there to subscribe.

You can also entice customers to sign up for your restaurant’s email marketing by providing a free prize that they can download/access immediately after providing their email address. Starbucks, for example, gives a 10% discount for signing up for their newsletter on their website.

Some restaurants also purchase local email lists and conduct mass email marketing campaigns. While this is beneficial in terms of reaching out to new customers, it may also be detrimental to your email marketing efforts. First, if your clients haven’t explicitly requested to receive emails from you, the emails you send are likely to end up in spam boxes. This defeats the purpose of sending emails entirely. Not only would the emails not produce the desired effects, but they would also have an influence on the deliverability of your other emails.

Second, sending unsolicited emails has a negative effect on your customers. Furthermore, these promotional emails may or may not result in paying clients. As a result, before sending any emails, you should always get permission from your consumers.

Design the email format

Once you’ve compiled a list of subscribers, it’s time to send them an email.

Make your subject line interesting. The subject line of an email is the most important aspect in determining whether or not a customer will open it. To come up with a catchy subject line, get creative with words. Simply keep it short and incorporate attention-getting phrases. ‘Get a FREE meal on your birthday!’ for example.

Personalize your remarks as well; no one will read an email that begins with “Dear Customer.” Use their name, city, or any other pertinent information to make it appear as if the email was written specifically for them.

Make a strong call to action. This might be a link to your menu and online reservations, or it could be a static google map with your phone number, hours of operation, and directions to your restaurant. If you provide food delivery, don’t forget to include an online ordering link in your emails.

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Emphasize the Advantages

Your email will not convert unless it contains information about what the customer can expect. Also, be specific with the advantages. Here are some restaurant email marketing concepts to consider for your email marketing strategy.

Offer a free snack, dessert, or a buy one, get one free drink deal. However, you should limit the offer to the near future, otherwise it will lose its worth. Promote forthcoming holiday promotions such as Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, and New Year’s Eve celebrations by promoting a special menu. Have you recruited a famous chef or bartender? Include it in your restaurant’s email marketing. Email marketing for birthdays and anniversaries is incredibly effective.

On their birthday or anniversary, give your customers a complimentary lunch. It will encourage them to invite a group of (paying) guests to the party. If you have a Wednesday Karaoke night or a Thursday Ladies’ Night Special, put it on the calendar and provide a link to the schedule in each email. Send your chef’s recommendations. Give your chef some room in your email to share an unique recipe, anecdotes from his culinary career, explain the subtle subtleties of a popular dish, or cooking tips and ideas on what to look for when buying seafood/meat.

Showcase your USP- You can talk about your healthy menu or how your restaurant’s kitchen uses only the freshest organic ingredients. However, if anything extraordinarily spectacular occurs, it will make for an entertaining story to read and will almost certainly entice visitors to visit your restaurant.

Encourage and reward customer loyalty

Many consumers prefer to eat at a restaurant that caters to their specific needs, treats them with respect, and recalls their regular orders. All of this and more may be accomplished through a loyalty programme. If your restaurant has a client loyalty programme, it’s critical that your email promotes it. Include your monthly promotions and events, along with the loyalty programme updates, to encourage your regular customers to visit even more frequently. Also, if you want to present a voucher to a customer who has visited your restaurant a particular amount of times, you can email them a meal voucher. Use this restaurant email marketing concept to keep your customers coming back.

Use proper email etiquette

On their first visit, people may have adored your restaurant. However, you may fade from their consciousness with time. As a result, send them regular emails to remind them of your existence. Concentrate on quality rather than quantity, though. Don’t send daily emails to your subscribers. Sending an email once a week, or when you have something unique and exceptional to give, is a solid rule of thumb for restaurant email marketing (usually in 10 days or a fortnight).

Thursdays are a good day to send emails because most individuals are planning their weekends. Send emails early in the morning, around lunchtime, and around 4 p.m., when most individuals are getting ready for work or taking a break. When sending out restaurant marketing emails, don’t bombard your customers. Customers may become irritated.

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Consider an email domain

The email domain is also important. It appears rude to send emails using Outlook Express or your personal Gmail account. Dedicated email software is recommended. Fishbowl, MailChimp, Vertical, Constant, and other email service providers can supply you with an email marketing platform and email services. Remember to whitelist your email domain to ensure that your emails are delivered properly.

Create mobile-friendly emails

A mobile device is used to open the majority of emails. According to a Kahuna survey, 86 percent of emails were opened on a mobile device in the first quarter of 2016. As a result, ensure that your email is mobile-friendly.

Include social media buttons in your design

If your restaurant has a presence on other social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, don’t forget to add links to these platforms in your restaurant marketing email so that your subscribers can follow you there and tag your restaurant in their photos. You’ll gain some free PR as a result of it.

Respond to emails promptly

Encourage customer feedback by encouraging them to respond to your emails, which you can do with the help of a smart restaurant POS. A statement like ‘We welcome your suggestions’ should be included in your email. If you’re sending out automated emails, make sure you provide an email address or phone number where customers may leave feedback. Regularly check your email for responses. As a general rule, try to respond to all clients within 48 hours.

Don’t allow your restaurant’s email marketing be an afterthought! If you want to improve foot traffic and revenue in your restaurant, it’s an absolute must.

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