How Facebook Marketing Help Restaurants

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Whether your restaurant is high-end, fast casual, a healthy eatery, a gastropub, or fast food, your restaurant’s specific target audience is on Facebook multiple times per day every day of the week.

If you’re not utilizing Facebook ads to reach your customers, you are missing out on one of the most effective advertising channels to reach them. And the worst part, if you’re not promoting your restaurant with Facebook ads, your savvier competitors are and stealing your customers.

Want to target event planners, group dining, private dining? That’s achievable with Facebook ads too.

Why Use Facebook ads to promote your restaurant?

Facebook is hands down the number one social media channel in the world. Your customers are there in the largest concentration out of any other social channel. And the vast majority of your customers access Facebook multiple times per day of which the majority are accessing via their mobile phone­. Pair this with the below statistics and insights (Source: Facebook Quarterly Report):

  • 65% of Facebook users access it daily
  • Facebook has 934 million mobile daily active users
  • Users spend 50 minutes per day on Facebook

Mobile is huge right now, and you’re probably not leveraging it well. Nobody is carrying around the newspaper, or a magazine and checking it multiple times per day – but they are on Facebook via their mobile phones. Of the three hours per day that consumers spend on mobile devices, almost a one-third of that is spent on Facebook! Consider also that many of your restaurant competitors are not very savvy yet with online marketing and are still over-relying on inefficient and wasteful traditional marketing. While traditional marketing has its place, there is a real opportunity for you to get in the game ahead of your slower, less sophisticated competitors.

Forget About Facebook Organic Posts – There’s No Exposure Without Ads

You can forget about the Facebook posts you put up on your restaurant’s Facebook page. Almost nobody sees those posts as Facebook has reduced your exposure to only 2% of your fan base – if you had 1,000 fans, you would reach maybe 20 people at best. Without ads, you have no exposure to anyone on Facebook (this is true of almost all social channels – without ads your ability to have an impact in social is severely limited). You say you do catering also? Facebook ads can be used very effectively in B-to-B marketing to target those decision makers as well for company picnics and corporate events. I will get to the specific ad ideas in a moment, but let me show you what’s possible with the targeting.

Facebook Ad Tactic #1: Seasonal Specials

You have dozens of menu items you could promote, but choose a dish that makes sense for the season. It helps if you have a calendar planned out in advance for the year for each month by week. If it is summer and you have great salads, showcase your salad options.

Alternatively, if it is Mother’s Day, showcase the food items that will resonate well with families and moms. Below is another example of targeting for Mother’s Day – perhaps your restaurant has a Mother’s Day brunch special, and you have fun activities planned for young kids as well.


Facebook Ad Tactic #2: Promote Restaurant Entertainment

Does your restaurant have live music entertainment on Fridays and Saturdays? Use Facebook ads to promote your entertainment to people that you know are highly likely to be interested. For example, if you are an Irish cafe, and you have an Irish band, target these people on Facebook.


Facebook Ad Tactic #3: Reward Your Existing Customers

It is possible to target your loyal, repeat customers with special promotions, or for just brand awareness to encourage repeat visits. What you choose to promote to them is up to you, but you can easily target them on Facebook.


Wrapping Up Facebook Ads For Restaurants

What I went through above was just a teaser of what’s possible with Facebook ads. The platform has so many options to be laser focused and targeted with your ad spend. If you have a restaurant and have not leveraged Facebook ads to promote your food, specials, or entertainment, you are missing a grand opportunity to engage with new customers where your restaurant competition is not.


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