How an Automated Marketing Calendar Can Set You Up for Restaurant Success

14 days ago   •   2 min read

By Amanda M. Westbrooks

As your guests fall back into their regular restaurant-going habits, you'll need to keep your marketing calendar in tiptop shape. Providing a great customer experience is still the name of the game, but how you promote your restaurant and communicate with guests has changed.

Centralizing your outreach and customer data into a marketing automation platform benefits your audience and your restaurant. It also streamlines communication with your guests, giving you more time to focus on running your business.

Harness and centralize your contacts.

Whenever customers interact with your systems to place orders or log in to use your Wi-Fi, they're giving you valuable contact data that you can use for reengagement opportunities and future promotions. You want software that can integrate with your point of sale, email, social media, and loyalty program systems—wherever you have marketing data. This will let you access your contacts across your restaurant's digital touchpoints and measure the return on investment of your campaigns in one central system. As a result, your contact list will grow automatically.

Boost customer loyalty and repeat visits.

Getting a repeat visit out of a first-time guest is a difficult challenge, but a critical one. An automated marketing calendar can entice guests to return based on messaging you select. You could automatically send a first-time guest a thank-you note the day of their visit and follow up with a special offer later.

You can interact differently with various segments of your audience, too. If you tied your calendar to your loyalty program, it could automatically send members special birthday offers or let them know when they've reached specific point milestones. You can personalize every detail of an automated message, making it perfect for anniversary messages, special reminders, event notices, and more.

Advance campaign scheduling and assignments.

When the little things are handled automatically, you can focus on bigger campaigns and messages. But automated marketing platforms can help there, too. Planning a new seasonal menu? Just finished a new patio? Upload some photos and create and schedule your social media posts in advance.

You can also delegate tasks to team members and assign due dates. If you were drafting an email campaign, for example, you could plan the content you want to push to your website, social channels, and mailing list without having to manually log in and check progress in different places—and you could reinvest the time and energy you would have spent on it into big-picture projects.

Set it and forget it.

As with any new system, an automated marketing calendar will take time to set up. But once it's done, you can focus on your business and come back to check the results and tweak as necessary. Log on just once, and you can track the return on investment of your monthly campaigns and check up on how your team members are making progress on their tasks. You can see where your efforts are producing the most results while keeping an eye on your reviews. And automation can also dramatically boost productivity, leaving you and your team free to focus on satisfying your guests' requests.

Building a marketing calendar on an automated platform that integrates with your systems gives you greater flexibility to deeply engage with your guests and real dollars-and-cents insight into your marketing efforts. Above all, an automated marketing platform maximizes your capacity to deliver an exceptional experience.

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