Restaurant Marketing Strategy
Once you know what advertising channels you’re using, who you’re targeting and how, it’s important to optimize your ads and strategy. You will optimize your first campaigns and continue optimizing campaigns as you continue your advertising program.
Split test different styles of ad copies until you can start to narrow in on what tone of messaging and content works best. Hook a customer in by starting with a small weakness—to show honesty and build trust—only to negate it with a stronger element. For example, “We’re a tiny restaurant, but that’s why reviewers love the intimate experience!” This wouldn’t work if you mentioned the small size and then came back with how clean the place is. The “but” should be directed towards the weakness. You want to leverage all the free real estate that comes with Google Ad copies, such as all the available ad extensions and maximum character limit. You’ll also want to split test shorter ad copies for mobile users because longer text can get cut off due to variation of the phone screen size.
With a larger budget, split test 3-4 ad copies. With a smaller budget, split test 2-3 ad copies to collect enough data within 30 days or so. Headers are expected to have the most impact, but split test everything from the ad text, phrasing (e.g. fun, catchy, negative first, cute, emotional, etc.), benefits, offers, features, unique proposition, etc. It really depends on who your audience is, and that’s why you need to split test to understand who your high-converting customer is, and what they are likely to respond to.
Pause your lowest-performing ad copy (do not edit it!), and replace it with a fresh one that is modeled after the best-performing ad. I want to emphasize not editing the ad copy if it’s low-performing because you do not want to convolute the data when someone tries to analyze it.
SOCIAL media ad content
Ad copies vary because people are not buying directly on social platforms. You want to collect data as you spread brand awareness. To do so, you need to split test various ad copies and pay very close attention to your demographic metrics to get a better sense of who your high-converting audience segment is.
Use ads featuring a lead magnet (see Email Marketing in Lead Nurturing) to start collecting email addresses from your promotions and then use them for remarketing. Facebook’s “Store Traffic” objective allows you to target potential customers within a certain radius and track them if they saw your ad and visited your restaurant.
Video advertising is where everything is moving in digital marketing. These videos are on mute and autoplay in Facebook’s news feed, so you should add captions to grab attention. Facebook has a feature built-in that allows you to seamlessly add captions to your video ads.
Remarketing is one of the most powerful tools that you can leverage in online advertising and it’s a feature built into all platforms. Building custom audiences and lookalike audiences is a must when extending your reach, and optimizing conversion rate and cost.
Social buttons on your website will allow your visitors to follow you and stay connected on other platforms. This will help build your organic ranking and grow your business in general. You need to have conversion tracking installed so you can analyze the data on behavior and website performance. Optimizing your website is just as important as your paid advertising strategy.
Consider seasons, holidays, and slow seasons and days that might offer great opportunities for promos, discounts, limited-time offers, etc. It also might make sense to focus most of your marketing efforts right before peak times throughout the year if the business you’re in is very competitive.
Google Ads and Bing Optimization
Remarketing is an option here as well because it’s one of the most powerful tools in driving conversions. You’ll build custom audiences based on customer behavior on the website. After collecting data for a couple of weeks or at least until you have enough results, you’ll also optimize based on the hour and day of the week. Lastly, you’ll be updating that negative keyword list to refine the high-quality custom audience.
Social Media Advertising Optimization
Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn offer the same features as Google and Bing. However, the demographic and interest-based targeting on social media is a lot better. You’ll be able to take full advantage of Facebook’s algorithm when you split test different audience groups to figure out the best combination that leads to the highest quality of conversions. Split testing will be key on these social platforms.
For LinkedIn specifically, target audiences at a granular level, such as by industry, job title, company, and more. The type of conversions will depend on your business’s marketing objective. Split test different demographics, geolocations, etc., to zoom in on high-converting traffic.
Optimizing Facebook, specifically, includes swapping the ad copies, testing the ad copies, and testing the ad sets, as well as creating a custom audience or lookalike audience and continuing to track custom conversions.
Swap Ad Copies: You have already tested what ads perform well on Facebook, so freshen up your next campaign. Swapping out ad copies with fresh ones is favorable to Facebook’s algorithm, which will lower the overall cost of advertising. Use a similar theme because you want similar expected results.
Split Test Ad Copies: Like with Google Ads, the importance of split testing ads should be a natural optimization step.
Split Test Ad Sets: Use different segmented audiences to fine-tune and discover the best segmentation that is going to give the right balance between conversions and cost.
Custom Audience/Lookalike Audience: Keep analyzing and making adjustments as needed to increase the performance of lookalike audience targeting and custom audience retargeting.
Custom Conversions: Keep tracking custom conversions to understand important business KPIs. Eventually, after analyzing the data and making performance adjustments for a few months, switch the campaign objective to optimize for conversions. You need to justify this switch after analyzing and optimizing results (or conversions) and cost.
Allocate your budget so 80% of it is focused on high-conversion groups and 20% is focused on lower-performing or experimental groups. Make budget, bid, and segmentation adjustments as needed to follow the 80/20 rule (80% budget on results and 20% on experimentation).
Pay close attention to your website performance because it’s as important as your Google Ads performance; website performance can refer to load time speed, bounce rate, time per session, etc. One of the most common mistakes businesses make towards digital marketing is wrongfully blaming poor performance on campaigns and advertising when the website is poorly optimized for conversions. You can bring the highest quality traffic at the lowest cost to the website, but all that doesn’t matter if they cannot convert due to the limitations of the website.
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