Posts Tagged ‘social networks’

Put the Social Back Into Your Use of Social Networks

September 18, 2010

Social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and to a lesser extent LinkedIn are the new ways that restaurants are getting people to drop by and spend food dollars. Facebook allows restaurants to set up a “fan” page. This means that a customer can sign up and say they love your restaurant. The “mini-blog” site Twitter offers followers for you to send short messages to.

The Problem with Social Networks for Restaurants

However, too many restaurateurs are taking the easy way out – putting up a fan page and then doing one of two things. They either send out spam e-mails to anyone who signs up, telling them to come in for a night out right now, with nothing else to offer. Or, almost as bad, they simply let the fan page sit there, collecting virtual dust.

Twitter accounts are the same way – there is a right way to use them and a wrong way to use them. Even LinkedIn can be important if your restaurant sports a fair share of business meetings. Here’s what you need to know in order to make things happen with these important tools:

Customers Want a Relationship With You

Whether you simply ignore your Facebook fan page or you send out spam messages, you are making the same basic mistake: you are ignoring your customers and/or treating them as if they don’t matter.

Customers who become fans of the restaurant want to know if there is a special event going on. A special event by definition is special – it doesn’t happen every single day.  Daily emails aren’t usually such a great idea. However, when you add new menu items or have live performances, that would be a good time to send out a message.


The other use that people find for Facebook and Twitter accounts is offering loyalty coupons. Sending out a 10% off your first entree coupon can go a long way to making people think of your restaurant when they want to have a night out. Just make sure you really do offer some value for customers so that they have a reason to pay attention.