Social media is essential in promoting businesses and engaging with customers and guests. At first glance, social media may seem like a waste of time. Below we’ve outlined the 3 most popular sites for restaurant goers – Twitter, Facebook, and Foursquare. We’ve also included Yelp, because we’ve noticed that the site is a growing concern for owners and managers of restaurants.
What it’s used for: interaction and conversation, real-time taste of consumer attitude, promotion
Overview: Twitter is a great resource for real-time interaction. Correctly monitoring Twitter results in a better understanding of the marketplace. Twitter allows users to search for topics and see what trending topics are in a specific area. It is a great place to interact with guests and join conversations that relate to the type of food or drinks served. For example, a sushi restaurant might search for #sushi, and find someone that is craving sushi in the area. They can then invite them in, establishing a connection with the guest. Restaurants can also use Twitter to announce and promote specials.
What it’s used for: relationship building, loyalty rewards
Overview: Guests can use Foursquare to check-in to businesses. Businesses take advantage of this by setting up specials, like free chips and salsa for every check-in or a free drink for the mayor. Restaurants can take advantage of Foursquare by monitoring check-ins and welcoming guests that have checked-in. Making a guest feel welcome and special increases the likelihood of them coming back again and again.
What it’s used for: promotion; conversation, photos, events
Overview: Facebook for business is helpful in promoting specials, posting images, and conversing with guests. One major benefit of Facebook is that restaurants can post things that people can look back on for months, like photos and comments. Facebook also allows users to create events and invite guests who “like” the page.