Perhaps one of the most frustrating things for a restaurateur is not finding the time to execute all the things on their to-do list.
You’re busy and you have a thousand things to do. And marketing your restaurant is one of those things.
Fortunately, marketing automation can save you a great deal of time when it comes to improving your marketing strategy and return on investment.
Not only can you improve guest lifetime values and your bottom line, but you can turn your guests into regulars and save time to concentrate on other areas of running a successful restaurant business.
Here we will discuss what marketing automation is, show you some examples, and tell you how you can get set up and running very quickly.
What is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation for restaurants is the process of using guest data collected by a restaurant customer data platform and an automated marketing platform to send marketing messages to guests automatically. Messages are sent based on specific criteria or a specific time configured by the marketer.
Further, messaging can be personalized to individual guests or groups of similar guests to improve engagement and ROI. This is also referred to as customer segmentation.
For instance, if your guest data includes your guest’s birth date, you can configure the CDP to send a happy birthday message a few days prior to that date. It can contain an incentive to get the guest to choose your restaurant for their special day. To personalize even more, you could create a different message for men and women, for example.
It is all done automatically. All you need to do is configure the campaign once and monitor the results.
This is just one example of many marketing automation campaigns restaurateurs can configure. Here are a few more examples.
Marketing Automation Campaigns
With the guest data you can collect using a customer data platform, and the insights you can discover, many other opportunities become available.
Here are some more automated campaigns that are successful in improving your restaurant business.
Upon Registration Campaign
When a guest makes their first online order, fills out your website form for the first time, or registers on your guest WiFi, a message can be automatically sent.
The message can thank the guest for ordering or registering, and maybe offer an incentive to get them to return for a second order or visit.
It is a great way to increase your first-time visitor return rate. In turn, guest lifetime values will increase, and more loyal guests can be created.
If you have a high first-time visitor return rate, it means you’re doing something or several things right. If you can maintain this return rate, retain these customers over the long term, and increase their lifetime value, your business can grow rapidly.
Upon Exit Campaign
This campaign is triggered when a guest leaves your physical location. It can also be very effective at improving your guest loyalty and return rates.
For instance, you can configure the message to be sent a specific amount of time after a guest exits your location. The message could contain any number of things, such as:
- a guest survey asking them to rate their experience
- an online rating request
- an incentive to get the guest to return, such as a free dessert or discounted price
- simple message campaign to reinforce branding, trust, and loyalty
The value of this type of campaign can be measured in several ways, depending on the message being sent.
For guest surveys and rating requests, you can gather even more insights into your guest sentiment. Then you can use that insight to improve operations and get more ideas for future marketing campaigns.
The rating request message reports also contain an easy-to-understand word cloud showing guest sentiment in positive, neutral, and negative clouds. This can give you an accurate view of what you’re doing right, and what could use more attention.
Sending an incentive message can improve your guest return rate and provide the same value as the upon-registration campaign above.
The At-Risk Guest Campaign
This is one of the most powerful marketing campaigns for restaurants.
Guest attrition, also known as customer churn, is inevitable in any business. For restaurants, understanding guest churn rate and being able to keep it under control can mean the difference between a crowded front-of-house, or an empty dining room.
As the CDP collects guest behavior data at your physical location and your online ordering platform, the machine learning algorithms are able to predict when any guest should be making a return visit or ordering online.
As time passes without another visit or online order, the guest is marked with a low, medium, or high chance of churning. Or, they are marked as churned altogether.
Then, with Bloom’s automated marketing suite, you can configure a campaign to send a specific message to these guests.
The message can contain an incentive to get them to return and re-establish their loyalty.
Bloom users have seen as many as 37% of their churning guests return for another visit. Imagine the value of not only seeing an accurate number of churning guests but to start getting them back through your doors.
The Rating Request Campaign
Online ratings and reviews are very powerful for restaurant revenue when they are positive. Likewise, they can hurt your business if they are negative. And most consumers will check these reviews before deciding on a restaurant to give their business to.
With this automated marketing campaign, you can send a message to a guest after a specified amount of time after they leave your physical location or execute an online order.
The message contains buttons that send guests directly to your Facebook or Google My Business ratings and reviews page, or directly to the Bloom platform. It’s a great way to understand guest sentiment and keep a consistent stream of ratings and reviews flowing.
There is also a link asking the guest to contact you directly if their experience was negative so that you can work to make things better and keep them as a loyal guest. This may keep the guest from leaving a negative review online.
Over time you can improve positive ratings, mitigate the negative ones, and begin to realize more first-time guests are arriving, while more previous guests continue to come back.
Discover Bloom Intelligence – Your Guests Will Love You For It
There are many other automated marketing campaigns and strategies to execute with the Bloom Intelligence customer database platform.
With Bloom, you’ll have a complete 360-degree view of your guest base. Then you can use the data to improve marketing and operations, save time, and increase guest lifetime values.
If you are ready to start collecting your own first-party guest data, you need to give Bloom Intelligence a look.
Not only will you be able to automate your restaurant email marketing, but you can also use Bloom to unlock valuable guest insights, improve your ratings and reviews, identify and bring back lost guests, and so much more.
You’ll feel confident as you make solid data-driven decisions. You’ll drive company growth and build a much larger base of loyal guests.
With the amount of competition out there, Bloom can give you a strong competitive advantage and ensure lasting success.