How To Market Your Restaurant On Facebook

Facebook Restaurant Marketing

Marketing on Facebook is a great resource for restaurants.

As we move into 2015, Internet marketing is more important than ever, and that includes Facebook restaurant marketing. The options available for marketing your restaurant on Facebook are tremendous, and the task can seem daunting if you aren’t aware of all the avenues available to you.

We encourage you to make a plan for your Facebook marketing. (tweet this) In this blog post, we’ll give you some tips and insight on how to market your restaurant on Facebook.

Master the Facebook News Feed

Some changes are coming your way in 2015. Facebook is making changes intended to improve users’ News Feed experience. According to Facebook’s blog, they are going to reduce the number of overly promotional posts in users’ News Feeds.

How does this affect your restaurant? It means a couple of things regarding your Facebook marketing strategies:

  • You need to focus more on content and less on prompting people to buy. Content posted for users should be something they can learn from, share and engage with.
  • Don’t bury links in photo captions. It’s best to use the regular link format (pasting links in your text) and share information about the link. Posts with links receive twice as many clicks compared to links embedded with photo captions.
  • Test your posts. Using Facebook Insights, find out which ones receive the most interaction. Tailor your content to provide value to the people who like your page.
  • Due to the Facebook page news feed changes in 2014 and the upcoming ones in 2015, you’ll want to explore paid advertising on Facebook. But before you start paying for Facebook marketing, set some social media marketing goals. Do you want Facebook page likes? Visits to your website? Fan page post engagement? Facebook allows you to choose from a long list of goals. If you’re not sure what you want to target, page likes or website visits are a good place to start. We’ll talk more about this later.

Update Your Cover Photo

This is free Facebook marketing space! Make sure your cover photo is set at the right size and resolution for the best results. Also, make sure it works with your profile image. There is nothing worse than profile images that cover up text.

Timeline photo size is 851×315 pixels, and profile photo size is 180×180 pixels. Your cover photo and profile image should accurately represent your restaurant and brand.

Share Regularly

Once upon a time we heard we shouldn’t post too often on Facebook and annoy our fans. Times have changed, and the Facebook posting recommendations are much different. The current Facebook posting advice is 5-10 times per week with a mixture of text, photos and video.

To help organize your Facebook posting, use a social media planning calendar. This gives you a cohesive plan and makes posting much easier. This way you can add important dates and holidays and set reminders up front.

Once you have your calendar, preschedule your posts at the start of the week for the whole week. Consider a schedule that includes links to your recent blog posts and website, menu highlights, high quality menu photos, videos, testimonials, cooking tips and inspirational quotes. Promotions and coupons are fine, but they shouldn’t be your main focus on Facebook. Be creative!

Lastly, keep your posts between 100 and 250 characters (letters and spaces) for maximum engagement.

Create a Facebook Offer

Facebook now gives you the ability to use an offer to give away an item.

You’ll find this option right on your timeline where you create a post. Consider offering something in exchange for an email address or an offer to be redeemed at your restaurant. For your first few offers, target your Facebook fans. It that goes well, widen your audience. It doesn’t cost to market using a Facebook offer unless you want to promote it. You’ll do that through Facebook ads.

Boost Your Posts

To increase your Facebook reach, you’ll want to step into the world of paid Facebook advertising. (tweet this)

The first type of Facebook paid advertising is boosting your posts. You can do this right on your post. Once you’ve entered your text, image or video, you can schedule your post and boost it from your timeline. You have several options for audiences:

  • People who like your page
  • People who like your page and their friends
  • People you choose through targeting

You can also set your budget and ad duration from your timeline page. Experiment a bit with boosting your posts. See which ones are the most popular and try to do similar posts.

Suggest Page to Your Email Contacts

On your timeline, at the top, and under “Build Audience,” you’ll see a drop down menu. The first item in the menu is “Suggest Page to Your Email Contacts.” If you’re a Constant Contact or MailChimp user, great! You can upload your names for those accounts. You’ll also have several other options for pulling those contact names.

This is an easy way to garner more page likes.

Facebook Paid Advertising

Facebook marketing provides great results without a huge investment.

Run Ad Campaigns

Look at the top of your timeline under “Build Audience.” Click on it, and at the bottom, you’ll see “Use Ads Manager.” Click here – this is where you’ll go to set up your Facebook ad campaigns. Once there, you’ll click on the green button, “Create an Ad,” in the upper right-hand corner. Follow the instructions to begin your set up.

Once you’ve chosen your target from the list (page likes, website visits, etc.), begin creating your ad. Follow the instructions for text, images, target audiences and budget.

Call to action: Always include a clear and direct call to action. If you want them to visit your website, let them know. There various buttons in the campaign editor. You can add these to your campaign to direct Facebook users. You can also use ads to highlight special events or deals or to promote brand awareness.

The headline: When creating your ad, Facebook automatically creates a headline for you. Instead of leaving this as-is, get creative and add your own headline to draw people in. The headline should be attention-grabbing.

Ad image: Pay special attention to the image size for your Facebook ads. The standard image size is 1200×628 pixels. Create your image this size for the best rendering. Additionally, don’t use too much text on your image, or Facebook won’t approve the ad. There is a text to image ratio of 20% text, so the less text on the image, the better. You can add up to six images for each ad. Test how different images perform with your text. Eliminate the poor performers.

Ad Budget: Control your Facebook ad costs by setting campaign limits. You can choose between daily and lifetime limits with a spending cap. This way you can be sure to control your costs.

Targeting: Take advantage of advanced targeting. Your targeting options are huge. You can also target using a custom audience with options that include your website visitors, your email list and much more.

We’ve shared a few of our favorite Facebook marketing tips. Try some of these and come back and tell us about it. Do you have a favorite tip for driving engagement? Let us know!

Images: mkhmarketing and  s_p_a_c_e_m_a_n 

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