Making a Dream Come True .. How to Market a Restaurant … or Your Business
For most owners of a cafe, pub, tea shop, wine bar, restaurant or coffee shop the start of their business is a dream come true. If you are one of these people, or maybe you’ve had an establishment for a while but are looking to grow it and your profits, then you probably already know that finding the cash to start a business and being able to produce great food and drink are only the first steps. You will already realise that getting customers through the door is a huge challenge. Just because you think your new business is perfect, and everyone will love it, doesn’t mean it will happen like that.
This is a problem faced by many business owners, it doesn’t only apply to hospitality businesses.
The following is taken from my latest book and applies to any business; and although it is written primarily for people in the hospitality sector, there isn’t a business in the world that can’t learn something from it.
How to Market Your Business
You will need to invest a lot of time and effort into marketing. But just throwing time and money at it isn’t going to work. You need to be really clever at spotting what will work for you and what is a waste of your time and money.
If a firm understanding of the best way to market your cafe, coffee shop, restaurant or pub is something you need, then this book is for you.
Over the various chapters, we’ll examine the proven ways to market a catering business … and we’ll dispel a few myths.
But before doing that I want to make one thing clear. This book isn’t about marketing theory. It is about putting into practice some very simple marketing truths. These are ideas and practices that can be simply and easily applied to your business.
In the coming chapters, we’ll look at various marketing ideas and channels. Used correctly they can all be used to promote your business; but that doesn’t mean you have to use them all. In his book, Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell contends that 10,000 hours of deliberate practice is required to become expert at a skill like marketing.
But you have a business to run and it will take you years to get enough experience to become good at marketing unless you find a shortcut. You don’t have that much time; without customers from day one your business will last no time at all. In fact, without customers, you don’t have a business.
Fortunately, Gladwell’s 10000 hours premise was based on the work of Dr Anders Erricsson et al and can be interpreted in other ways. But you don’t need 10000 hours deliberate practice at all.
Simply because you don’t need to become fully proficient at marketing. What you need to do is become proficient at those elements of marketing that you need to market your restaurant, wine bar, coffee shop, tea room, pub or catering business.
How to Market Your Business .. Becoming Proficient at Marketing
So you don’t need to become an expert at everything in this book. What you need to do is become aware of the various options available to you …. these are included in the front sections of the book ….. then you need to decide on your marketing strategy and therefore which options you need to use to market your business.
OK, so this will not happen instantly, but if you follow the marketing strategy template I’ve included it will be relatively easy for you to decide on the marketing channels and tactics you do need to become proficient at.
This means that once you have a strategy that suits you you’ll have some choices. You can either implement your strategy in-house or you can subcontract some or all of it to others. I personally prefer to keep as much as possible inhouse. If you decide to outsource any of your marketing you really need to have a good grasp of what you need, how it will be achieved, what success will look like and how much it will cost. If not you are at the mercy of anyone that claims to be an expert. That can be a costly mistake.
Some of the very simple marketing truths, ideas and practices I’m going to discuss with you have been used for generations and some are newer. In all cases, we need to be able to prove to ourselves that they do work, and I’ll explain how you can do this as we proceed through the chapters.
One thing you’ll probably already know is that customers eat with their eyes before they put food in their mouths. So presentation is always going to be important. That doesn’t only mean on the plate. In some cases, it means photographs on the menu or on the walls of your establishment. In other cases, it is the appearance of the food as it is served to nearby tables that will influence other guests from the moment they arrive.
This applies to all business types. As business owners, we need to find our equivalent to presenting food on a plate … It can be as simple as a window display, our website or a brochure. The thing is we need to attract attention.
And sight isn’t the only factor to consider. Aroma and sound can also be important. Go into any restaurant that serves food on a sizzling dish and it can be heard as soon as it leaves the kitchen. And the reason some restaurants have a chef’s table in the kitchen is so that the guests get to see, smell and hear all that is going on before a morsel of food touches their lips. And of course, they will love being able to tell their friends that they sat at chef’s table and saw him cook.
The sensory elements above are all part of the psychology of marketing. From time to time in the text, I’ll reference some research, from eminent Nobel prize winners like Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahneman and others, that the marketing ideas are based on. But don’t worry you don’t need a degree in psychology or psychophysics to understand it. But having said that a good understanding of what makes people tick is essential in marketing your establishment.
But before we dig too deeply into the psychology, behavioural decision theory and more, we’ll start with the first myth … it’s that marketing is all about advertising.
You can learn more about How to Market a Cafe, Pub, Tea Shop, Wine Bar, Restaurant or Coffee Shop by reading my book. Its available on Amazon and can be downloaded on to any digital device. Just click the above link.
And did I tell you it’s free on Kindle Unlimited?
And there are more free marketing tips at
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