- Posted by The CorkGuru
Social media is an ever-present function of our daily personal lives, and it should be a function of your restaurant’s daily marketing plan as well.
Have you ever wondered, though, how your restaurant lines up with the competition when it comes to social media?
With more than 25 million Facebook business pages, you might find it hard to stand out in a crowd.
In this article, we ask the question, “How does your social media presence stack up?”
Are you doing what you need to do to thrive on social media? Are you using your platforms to their fullest potential?
Let’s look at some areas for you to focus on when it comes to stacking up to the competition.
Audit Your Platforms
Your first step is to make a list of all the social media pages you have. Perhaps you manage one and staff members manage the others. It’s easier and more time effective to manage them in one place, so start with a list.
Then, if you aren’t sure how many platforms you have, do a Google search for your business.
If you are “important” on a social network, your page may show up on the first page in the search results. Click through several pages to make sure you grab all of your networks.
Now, it’s time to get organized. Using a spreadsheet program, make a list of your social media platforms.
Then, you want to take a good look at each one of your accounts. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Is this platform useful?
- Do I have a large following?
- Do my followers like, comment, share, re-tweet or post?
- Am I “wowing” my customers on this page?
- Should I continue my presence on this social media network?
If you find a platform that isn’t currently useful to your business, ask yourself why. Is it because your customers aren’t using it, or is it because you aren’t actively using it.
Look for Consistency
If your restaurant has multiple social media pages, and different staff members are managing each one, odds are your social media accounts are not consistent.
This can be a real problem for your restaurant. To maintain your brand image, all of your platforms must be consistent with the following:
- Cover photo
- Up-to-date description of your restaurant using relevant keywords
- A link to your website
- A consistent voice
- Consistent imagery – for example, one platform might have professional looking photos while another might have photos taken with an ancient phone
To succeed on each social media platform, your messaging must be appropriate to your audience, but it also should convey the same voice and messaging. Take a look at each social media platform. Are you posting exactly the same content everywhere?
While you can use the same message, your Twitter tweets by their very nature will be different than your Facebook posts. Instagram is visual, so your text can be very minimal. LinkedIn posts should apply to your audience – usually people in the business world.
Check your consistency on each platform and make sure you have the same look and voice. Then, you can tailor your content to appeal to each specific audience.
Your social media platforms provide valuable links to your website.
Check Your Content
Now that we’re on the subject of content, it’s time to really see how you stack up to the competition. Let’s look at your content in detail.
Check out the type of content you are posting. Do you always include links? Are you leveraging the power of video? Is there an image or video included with each post or tweet? If not, they should be as images and videos attract more people.
Are you constantly self-promoting? In other words, is every post about your menu items, your restaurant and your specials?
Do you curate content from other social media platforms? Do you re-tweet or share other content?
Are you following the 70/20/10 rule? It looks like this:
- 70% of your content should be relevant and add something of value for your followers
- 20% of your content is sharing other people/business’ posts
- 10% is promoting your restaurant
The most important thing to remember when using your social media platforms is to post and share content that is valuable, relevant, educational, humorous, insightful, inspirational, or pertains to the needs and wants of your restaurant customers.
Next, ask yourself how often you post. Do you do really good for one week and then fall off during the next week?
Social media posting should be regular and consistent. For some platforms that may mean once a day, while for others, like Twitter, that means multiple times per day.
Do take a look at your social media insights to determine what time of day is best for your posts and when they get the most action. You want to post when your audience is online.
Monitor Your Insights
If you want to know just exactly how you stack up on social media, look at your social media insights.
Checking your audience engagement lets you know what’s working, and what isn’t.
Some things to look at include:
- Time of day for best engagement
- Number of comments on posts/tweets
- Number of shares on posts/tweets
- Number of likes on posts/tweets
By monitoring your analytics on a regular basis, you can tweak content so it works for your restaurant.
Review Your Competition
You can’t know how you stack up against other restaurants in town if you don’t know what they’re doing.
Look at their presence on social media. Are they maintaining consistent branding? Do a large number of people like and share their posts?
Some platforms, like Facebook, let you see how other business pages are doing. Be sure and add the pages you want to watch as this allows you to see what posts work for them.
Monitor their activity. Are they every day or not so often? How many fans do they have? Are they active?
Regular review of your competition can help you with your own social media marketing efforts as you might get some ideas to use on your own platforms.
Lastly, we encourage you to look at your social media goals.
Do you have certain goals for specific social media accounts? Are you meeting them?
On that spreadsheet list you created of all of your platforms, consider adding goals to this list. That way you can reassess your social media marketing on an ongoing basis to see if you are stacking up to your own goals.
Set goals for the future, test, monitor and analyze your social media networks so you can see what’s performing well, and where you can revise and improve.
Finally, to really stack up against the competition, your social media marketing needs a plan. Create a content calendar and posting schedule. Assign someone to handle it to help ensure a consistent brand message for your restaurant