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Getting Started with Your Restaurant Marketing Plan

Baz Rothwell is a specialist in marketing for restaurants and other hospitality venues. In this guide, he gives a practical approach to developing an effective marketing plan for your restaurant.

restaurant marketing plans

Restaurant Marketing can be a tricky business.

You may well wonder where to begin. Often not knowing where to start can be the very reason why you don’t even get started! So in order to get things into perspective you need to have a strategy or plan of what you want to achieve and why.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What am I looking to achieve?
  2. Which area of my business do I need to focus on or improve?
  3. Who would be my ideal customers for this area?
  4. Where should I look for these ideal customers?
  5. How can I best target these customers?

Try to be as specific as possible when answering the questions as this will allow you to be much more targeted in your approach

Let's take an example here. Your answers may be something like this:

  1. I am looking to be the venue of choice for local business lunches/entertainment.
  2. Luncheon activity Monday to Friday
  3. Businesses that entertain clients on a regular basis or who hold business lunch discussions among themselves.
  4. Local organisations that have regular callers trying to sell them stuff, bank managers, Accountants and other professions that tend to entertain clients.
  5. Contacting local Chamber of Commerce, dropping flyers or making personal calls to these specific professions. Online advertising targeted at local business owners.

These answers are very short, your answers could be more comprehensive and focused. Whatever your answers are, they need to be modelled on your offering or service. By this I mean if you want to offer a special lunch deal or menu that is modestly priced to capture a wider audience, then your target audience will not be those listed above. You will want to be targeting local office workers, shop staff etc., and you will be looking for quantity and turning around your covers quickly. In the example above you would be seeking a longer lingering lunch with a price tag that reflects good service and a good menu and more than likely a good range of wines.

restaurant marketing plans

Questions 1 and 2 are very similar but question 2 will give you a good start point, by figuring out your spare capacity it will give you an indication of where to take this line of questioning. Then it is simply a matter of matching the best marketing means to your five questions. So why not get started right now, get that pen and paper out or open a new document on your computer.

For more of Baz's advice visit his website, restaurantmarketingguy.com, a site loaded with strategies and ideas for effectively marketing your venue, or follow him on twitter: here.

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