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The Ultimate Guide To Social Media Marketing For Restaurants

Updated: Jun 16, 2021

Social media has become an essential marketing tool for small businesses and big companies alike.

As of January 2021, nearly five million Singaporeans use social media every day. Some of the biggest social media platforms in Singapore include YouTube, Facebook and Instagram. Additionally, platforms such as Tiktok are gaining popularity amongst business owners who are trying to build more brand awareness. With the amount of user traffic these social media platforms receive now, there are plenty of opportunities for people to discover your brand.

This then begs the question - how can you utilise social media to improve your business? Social media marketing campaigns are a great place to start! A social media campaign is an organised marketing effort that promotes a product, service, or business through social media.

An example of a social media campaign that we can look at is Tiffany & Co’s collaboration with Tiong Bahru Bakery in 2018. Customers were encouraged to take to social media with the hashtags #tiffanypaperflowers and #tiongbahrubakery, along with pictures of the bakery’s coffee carts decked in the signature Tiffany blue. In exchange, these customers got a free croissant and coffee. As a result, Instagram was flooded with photos of people posing outside the cafe, with the eye-catching Tiffany blue coffee carts in the background. This not only helped to increase awareness of the cafe, it also helped Tiffany & Co spread the news of the launch of their new collection.

Successful social media campaigns will get people talking about your brand, resulting in great benefits such as:

  • Increased brand awareness and recognition

  • Opportunities to promote special product launches

  • Avenues to gather feedback and sentiments from customers about your brand

We’ve come up with a step-by-step guide that can help you plan your next social media campaign more effectively, in order to help your business grow. Read on to find out more!

Creating your next social media campaign: A step-by-step guide.

1. Select and analyse your target audience

The first step to creating a successful social media campaign is to decide on your target audience. A target audience refers to people that businesses market towards to promote a product or service. Consider your target audience as the ideal, perfect customer you want to attract to your business. What is this person’s age, gender, income, marital status, and so on? Audience demographics can be very useful in determining the type of content you would want to roll out in order to best capture their attention.

On top of this, take note that you have to consider your customers’ behaviour, especially their online activity. The following guiding questions should give you a clearer idea of what you should be looking out for when deciding your target audience profile.

  • What sort of content do my customers like and share the most?

  • Which social media sites do my customers use most frequently?

  • How long do my customers spend on social media?

  • Who do my customers follow on social media?

Use these factors to develop a buyer persona - an imaginary person representing the characteristics of your ideal customer base. The buyer persona you create should reflect your customer base demographics. You can even make multiple personas if your social media campaign is targeting more than one group!

Here’s an interesting case study that’ll give you a better understanding of how audience analysis works. Digital marketing solution, Hashmeta Singapore, organised a social media marketing campaign for Primataste back in 2017. A local F&B company, Primataste was aiming to get the word about their new product - their instant Ready Meals packages that were marketed to be both convenient and delicious.

Hashmeta observed and investigated Primataste’s audience demographics based on their existing customer base. From there, they developed 4 main categories of potential customers, and took a deep dive into their audience profiles to develop in-depth buyer personas. Based on this, they thought of ways to promote Primataste’s newest product based on common problems that the target audience faced, specifically targeting the pain points of each buyer.

Your social media campaign can go in many different ways depending on your audience demographics and online behavior. While it’s a good idea to market towards a general audience, you cannot possibly make content that everyone would like and reshare. The best social media campaigns are those that have identified a target audience and made content for this group only.

If you know your target audience well enough after researching, you can now proceed to the next step of your social media campaign!

2. Set realistic goals that cater to your target audience

Now that you know your target audience, you can set goals for your social media campaign! Some examples of main goals are driving more customers to your store or raising brand awareness. Main goals can change depending on your current situation or your target audience’s needs. For example, your business is having trouble keeping customers loyal. That means your goal for this social media campaign would be to encourage old customers to return to your store.

When you’re setting goals for your social media campaign, remember the acronym SMART . SMART, if you don’t already know what it stands for:

  • Specific - What exactly do you want to achieve with the campaign? Is it more sales and foot traffic in your store, or simply generating higher numbers for your social media statistics?

  • Measurable - What tools can you use to evaluate the effectiveness of your social media campaign? Can these tools be used to compare your business’s performance before and after the campaign?

  • Attainable - Based on the time and budget you set for this campaign, can you and your team achieve the goal? If not, how can you tweak it so that everyone in the team can contribute meaningfully to the campaign?

  • Relevant - Will this goal help your business in the long run, be it in sales or public relations?

  • Time-based - How long will I give my business to create and implement the social media campaign?

Once you’ve decided on the main goal, you need to come up with an action plan that’ll get you there. Break down that big goal into smaller, more manageable tasks. Simplifying your tasks will help you to visualise the entire process of the campaign better.

At this point, you should create a content calendar. A content calendar keeps track of which posts your company needs to make or upload. It keeps everything from becoming messy if you manage a large team that’s working on different tasks. If your business plans to use more than one social media account for the campaign, the content calendar will help you know when and where you will post content specifically. You can stay consistent with posting times and plan content ahead of time.

3. Find a suitable social media platform for your campaign

Based on your target audience and campaign goals, you have to prioritise which social media platforms to use.

The first factor you must always consider is your target audience’s preference. Which platforms do they prefer and use the most? Wherever the target audience goes, you must follow! You’ll have a better idea of which social media sites your target audience visits after defining who they are and figuring out their demographics.

According to Statista, 88.7% of social media users in Singapore frequent YouTube the most, making it the most popular social media platform in Singapore as of 2020. Meanwhile, Facebook and Instagram follow closely behind with 82% and 65.1% users respectively. Other platforms like TikTok are also gaining popularity, and it is estimated that nearly one million Singaporeans downloaded TikTok between the months of January and July 2020,

Here’s an infographic you can use to decide which platform is suitable for social media campaign:

To review, you should pick these platforms for your social media campaign for the following reasons:

  • Facebook - 49.5% of Facebook’s total users are mature adults (35 years and above). If your audience profile fits this age range, this is a must for your campaign. Engaging images and long-form videos (around 4 min) do especially well on Facebook!

  • Instagram - Young adults aged between 25 to 34 make 40.2% of Instagram’s total users. If you’re posting mostly pictures or short-form videos (1-3 min), then use this platform to capture the young adults market segment!

  • TikTok - It attracts people aged between 13 to 25, and is more popular among women. Videos are important for every social media campaign, and if you want to make quick but memorable short-form content targeted towards young people, TikTok is a good choice!

  • YouTube - Ideal for placing skippable or unskippable paid ads for a large audience to see. Unlike other social media platforms, YouTube allows accounts to post longer videos, usually around 15 minutes.

When choosing which social media sites to use for your campaign, make sure they are platforms your target audience uses frequently. Remember, you do not have to make content for every single social media platform out there! Otherwise, you’ll end up spreading yourself too thin. Pick the social media sites that are most relevant to your campaign and will help you meet your main goal. After all, what’s the point of having a social media presence on a site that your target audience doesn’t even use?

4. Work on your campaign’s messaging

The next part is angling your campaign’s messaging. Coming up with the main message that supports your campaign’s goals is never easy. Usually, the campaign message should have a hook and a call to action that pushes more people to visit your store.

Choosing a good campaign theme comes first. Social media campaigns centred around festivals and holidays like Christmas, Chinese New Year, Hari Raya, and Deepavali are highly popular among businesses looking to boost their sales. Other themes you can consider tapping on are:

Next, decide what sort of tone and voice you want when making your content. The tone and voice should tie into your main theme. Do you want to sound warm and inviting, or funny and relatable? Try matching your campaign’s main goal with the messaging to stay consistent. Making your content sound more down-to-earth and personal is also important, so no formal language in your writing - emojis are more than welcome! Think of how your target audience would talk in their normal, everyday conversations. The goal when writing anything for social media is about sounding relatable and genuine.

Lastly, strategise on your content form. Don’t stick to just one post format! Experiment with different content types such as images, videos, or GIFs. Usually, you’d want visuals in your posts to keep your audience engaged. You can even try jumping on recent trends that are popular among your audience group! For instance, a particular TikTok challenge, or a trending meme that is being widely circulated. Tap on the virality of these and adapt them to suit your campaign needs!

With the campaign’s messaging in mind, now you can make actual content for your social media pages.

5. Monitor and evaluate your social media campaign

Now that you’ve rolled out the campaign, it’s time to sit down and evaluate the overall performance of your campaign. Businesses big and small pour lots of time and effort into this final step, but why is it so important?

Evaluation gives you insights as to how much your social media presence has grown as a result of the campaign, and whether your campaign was successful or not. It also informs your future campaign efforts as well. Had a content idea during the campaign that didn’t turn out the way you wanted? Take a deep dive into the analytics to find out why it did not work out!

You can do an evaluation of the campaign through social media analytics tools. Big social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram offer these tools to everyone for free. With these, you can easily see how your posts perform at a glance. However, you may also choose to use third-party analytics such as Google Analytics and Hootsuite.

The more general indicators of a successful social media campaign are:

  • Page likes - Compare how many likes your posts received during the campaign against older posts. Is there a large difference between the numbers? Posts with higher likes are ones you can consider referring to for future campaigns.

  • Post shares - How many people shared your content during the campaign? There’s a chance the reshared content directed more people to your page. It might also indicate that you’ve managed to reach more people than just your target audience.

  • Number of followers - How many followers did your social media page have before the campaign? Did it increase or decrease during the campaign? Gaining new followers is like earning another loyal customer. It means that your audience liked your brand much that they would return to your store in the future.

  • Brand mentions - How many people tagged your business on social media before, during, and after the campaign? Brand mentions are a good indicator of how memorable your campaign was to the target audience.

However, these numbers should not be the sole determinants in measuring the success of your campaign. Depending on your campaign’s goals, you could be looking at different metrics to measure its success. For instance, you could be looking at factors such as number of store visits, number of reservation enquiries, number of delivery orders, etc. You can even compare sales numbers from before the campaign and after. If there’s a noticeable increase in any of these metrics, then you know you achieved or exceeded your main goal, and you have your social media campaign to thank!

Organize and draw actionable insights based on the data you have drawn from the evaluation of your social media campaign. If you ever plan on creating another campaign, you can use this information to plan better and more focused ones.

When all is said and done, the campaign should have improved your business one way or another!

What's next?

Now that you have a complete guide get you started with social media marketing, you can get started on your very own campaign! Remember that social media marketing requires constant effort, and you should always be consistent. Be sure to do a review at the end of each campaign, so you know what works for you and what doesn’t.

Once you’ve found what works, you can stick to it, or experiment with other ways you can improve it! If you’re a business owner who is looking for a way to increase brand awareness and would like your very own customisable cashback programme to drive customers to your store, head over to our website here. Leave your details there, and we’ll be in touch!

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