The Best Restaurant Marketing Software (Buyer's Guide)
Looking for top tier restaurant marketing software? In this post, we share how to use built-in features in Truffle POS to successfully promote your restaurant.
Truffle POS is an award-winning, best-in-class point of sale system, built for restaurants of all sizes. Whether you need a basic POS system to process orders, want to take your restaurant online while eliminating the middleman, or are looking for an all-in-one solution to manage your entire restaurant from staffing to kitchen displays, Truffle POS does it all.
But did you know that when you use our all-in-one restaurant management platform, you also have access to a wide range of marketing tools to promote your restaurant? Add restaurant marketing software to the long list of Truffle POS features.
In this guide, we’ll share tips on how to use the marketing features in Truffle POS to update, upsell, cross sell, and stay at the top of your customers’ minds.
Let’s get started.
Top Restaurant Marketing Features to Look For in a POS
Not every restaurant POS offers marketing features. Some POS systems are no frills and no fuss, which may be okay if you’re only focused on transactions.
But if you’re operating a modern restaurant with the goal of increasing awareness throughout your community, you need a POS system that can do more than tally up an order.
This is where Truffle POS comes in. We offer an extensive list of marketing features that were developed for this new digital era of food service. Our tools will empower you to build your business quickly and increase your exposure exponentially.
Here’s a look at the top marketing features you’ll have access to through Truffle POS:
Offering special promotions, in the form of discounts, is a great way to get exposure for your restaurant. However, there’s a right way and wrong way to do it. Let’s discuss how to effectively use discounts to market your restaurant.
The most important thing to consider is when to offer discounts. If you have a steady cash flow and loyal customers who are returning weekly (if not sooner), you don’t need to offer a special discount. Your customers have already proven that they’re willing to pay the price for your orders.
However, if you notice that your sales aren’t as good as you’d like, you can try discounting your prices. This way, you’ll incentivize future sales.
You can offer discounts without harming your restaurant’s reputation.
Here are a few types of discounts that you can offer to your customers:
Buy One Get One (BOGO)
This popular option makes it easy for your customers to see the value of your offer. You can offer different BOGO options, such as buy one, get one free or buy one product, get another specified product for free.
Many restaurants offer a combo deal, which is a combination of different entrees and sides. Combos may or may not include a beverage. When offering a combo, make sure that you’re not undercutting your own profit margin.
Days of the Week Specials
You can offer discounts for food items, depending on the day of the week. For example, you can slash 50% off of the price of tacos on Tuesdays.
You can also offer limited time discounts to commemorate the season. Since every month has a holiday, you can create special discounts for these days. And then you can create a marketing campaign over email, text, and social media to drive traffic back to your restaurant.
In addition to discounts, you can offer coupons for menu items that increase customer interest and give you the opportunity to cross sell or even upsell customers once they’ve decided to redeem their coupon.
Coupons are a popular option for restaurants because more than 90% of consumers are comfortable with and regularly use them. Use coupons to market your restaurant and your menu items.
With Truffle POS, you can create both discounts and coupons for your restaurant.
Here’s what you need to know to create successful coupons:
Treat coupons as a loss leader. A loss leader is an item that you take a loss on in an effort to bring customers into your store. You can then upsell the customer once they’re in your restaurant.
Add the fine print. What are the terms and conditions of using your coupon? If it cannot be combined with other offers, you need to explain that.
Set expiration dates. Describe how long your coupon is good for or else you’ll have to honor that special 99¢ coupon that you issued five years ago on an item that’s now $20.
One of the best ways to market your restaurant is through your printed receipts. With your receipts, you can engage your customers so that they keep coming back.
This is why it’s important to choose a restaurant POS system that enables customizable receipts, both printed and digital.
Let’s take a look at how you can use your receipts to encourage future visits to your restaurant:
Ask for feedback in exchange for a money off coupon. On your coupon, link to a special feedback page. After they successfully complete the survey, the customer will be given a special code that they can use for a future visit. Be sure to change the code that you use at least once a month. Also set an expiration date on when they can redeem the code by.
A variation of the above is to offer a coupon if the customer signs up to your email list. This is a great way to build up your email list. Once they’ve signed up, you now have your customer’s permission to continue marketing to them. And you can do that directly through their inbox. (We’ll discuss more about email marketing next.)
You can also add a QR code to your email. A QR code can link to any website that you choose. To access this link, your customer will simply open their camera app and scan the QR barcode. Then, they’ll be prompted to open the link. This makes it easy for you to direct customers to the right link, and it’s convenient for the customer.
Text messages aren’t just limited to order status and pick up notifications.
Don’t overlook text messages as a way to market your restaurant and woo your customers back through your doors.
If you know your customer’s phone number and you have their permission to market to them through text, you can send marketing text messages to them on a regular basis. And text messages are even more successful at reaching your customers.
When compared to other forms of marketing, text messages have an incredibly high success rate. Most text messages are opened within minutes of receipt. The average email open rate for the restaurant industry is around 20%, but the percentage of people who actually click on the link within the email is around 1.34%. The average open rate for text messages is 99% and the click through rate is an astounding 45%.
But how do you get your customers to sign up for your text message marketing feature? You can invite them to sign up for your text message list in your restaurant. Make an enticing offer, such a free appetizer, in exchange for permission to add the customer to your text messaging community. This way, the customer wins and so do you.
Once you have their phone number and marketing permission, you can use Truffle POS to send out customized marketing messages over text.
And here’s how to use text messaging to promote your restaurant:
- Send random discounts that expire within 24 hours to encourage a spontaneous visit.
- Celebrate your customer’s birthday by offering a special treat via a text message.
- When texting a receipt, recommend an upsell. To sweeten the deal, consider offering the upsell at a discount.
- Run a limited promotion where you offer a specific number of customers a free item in your restaurant. You can limit this number to the first 50 or 100 customers who respond back to your text. This type of text encourages a quick response from your customers, which can effectively market your restaurant.
- Another powerful way to use SMS text message marketing is to prevent cart abandonment. Sometimes, customers add menu items to their cart but then fail to complete the order. This may be due to distraction or some technical problem on your website. However, you can use a text message to gently nudge your customer back to their cart to finally complete their purchase.
One of the best ways to market your restaurant is through email.
Although email doesn’t have the same high open rate as text, it’s still around because it’s effective at several things.
First, frequent emails will keep you at the top of your customer’s minds. They won’t have a chance to forget about your restaurant if you’re constantly sending out new, valuable content via email.
Second, email allows you to naturally nurture your relationship with your customers. Once you’ve connected through email, you can continue to gain their trust by sending valuable discounts and specials for your restaurant that your customers will care about.
Third, email gives you the chance to share ongoing news about your restaurant, such as an upcoming promotion or a special event. This lets you spread your news to as many people as possible.
There are multiple ways to use email to promote your restaurant. Here are a few ideas for emails that you can send out:
- Seasonal special
- “We miss you/Come back”
- Birthday greetings
- Highlight special feature
- Your latest health and safety protocols
- Feedback requests
Before sending out emails, be sure to segment your subscriber list. Segmenting means breaking your list of subscribers into smaller groups based on different criteria. For example, you can segment based on what the customer has ordered in the past, how much money they’ve spent in total, or how much they spend on an average order.
By segmenting your subscriber list this way, you will be able to create more personalized emails for your restaurant customers. And these emails will encourage your customers to return to your restaurant more frequently.
When sending emails to your customers, keep the following tips in mind:
- Send newsletters regularly – Don’t be inconsistent with newsletters. Send your emails frequently enough (and on a predictable schedule) so that your customers anticipate your updates. This builds trust with your customers.
- Send out a valuable email every time – Include something that’s exciting or useful to your customers.
- End your emails with a call to action – This message, like “order now” or “reserve a table,” will prompt your subscriber to take action.
- Send out a welcome email to all of your new subscribers – Whenever a customer signs up for your email list, send out a welcome email that confirms their subscription. You can also take this opportunity to share a special offer, which will drive sales right away.
To increase sales, you need a powerful restaurant marketing software. Look no further than Truffle POS.
Truffle POS is an industry leading, easy-to-use restaurant marketing platform. Truffle POS handles everything from online orders to delivery management. We also give you the tools you need to build awareness for your restaurant and stay top of mind with your customers. Click here to learn how Truffle POS can revolutionize your restaurant.