Restaurant Marketing Tips inspired by CreateTech 2013
The restaurant business being described as “highly competitive” is surely an understatement due to the diverse choices from which to make dining decisions. That’s why we stress the importance of innovating and adopting ongoing restaurant marketing initiatives to differentiate from competitors. Other industry leaders agree that it takes fearlessness when using creativity and technology in marketing. This was highlighted at the CreateTech 2013 conference last week where our team was right there amidst an eclectic group of creative geniuses. The two day conference focused on pushing the boundaries of technology and how professionals and companies innovate to engage consumers. The following are key takeaways:
Step out of your Comfort Zone
“Wherever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision.”
Peter Drucker, Management consultant and author
One thing that was made abundantly clear was that brands need to step out of their comfort zones. Removing yourself from your common environment can trigger innovation. Traditional ways of advertising can still be effective, however not all businesses can afford traditional media channels. Therefore, digital strategies may prove to be a better return on investment. If this is not your forte, then establishing your business with a digital agency is the best bet. Learn why agencies exist and can aid in building your brand.
Innovate – Embrace Data and Technology
“Business has only two functions – marketing and innovation.” Peter Drucker
Be fearless with technology. As Ray Kurzweil, Director of Engineering at Google Inc. put it last week, “tools for creative change are in everyone’s hands”. For instance, think about how augmented reality can be used in restaurant marketing to transform your menu from a flat page to showing how various meals will actually look, their ingredients and recommendations. This is creating a whole new experience for customers and engaging them at every touch point. This can also be a handy tool for up-selling and may entice and motivate customers to try more options on the menu. Creative technology can also be used in simpler ways to transform content, increase customer engagement and loyalty. Denny’s for example, has been applauded for their hilarious use of GIFs – animated images that are both brand and user generated. Use technology to tell stories about your brand.
Educate yourself and your team
“We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.” Peter Drucker
Another major tenet emphasized by many of the influencers was the importance of continuous education. Some agencies were even creating open forums to invite both their staff and clients to educate them more about digital marketing and creative technology. Because some people fear technology, education empowered participants to make better decisions and be more open to agency ideas. Being proactive with industry reading and brainstorming with staff are also encouraged. Agencies and their clients were inspired to adopt a process of “LEARN -> DO -> TEACH.”
In the digital realm everything happens fast, so try to be nimble, however perfection is not often built overnight. Hopefully these three tips inspire you to learn more about how creative technology can be integrated into your future restaurant marketing plans.