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Why digital marketing should be on every restaurant’s menu…

Posted on 05 Sep 2012 in Cross Media Marketing, Personalised URLs | 0 comments

You should already have a database of satisfied customers (I say ‘should’, because although it’s really a no-brainer, far too many people overlook this vital aspect of running a business). You may have run a prize draw or competition for free meals, tried out a coupon marketing campaign like ‘Groupon’, or simply got customers to fill out a comments form. But even if you haven’t, you can easily identify your target market and buy a list of potential leads from a specialist company – it’s not that expensive. And what you’ve got for starters, we’re going to build on.

Anyway I’ll assume that – by hook or by crook – you’ve got that database handy. Because it’s the vital ingredient in this little recipe for marketing success!

  • First…identify your targets. Choose, say, 5,000 in the age/sex/salary range and postcode areas you consider most fertile for new business.
  • Next, send out a simple mailshot. On colourful, plasticised, printed postcards. With perforated snap-off coupons people can redeem in your restaurant. On each card is a personalised URL (website address) featuring the recipient’s name. And instructions on how to visit that personalised ‘microsite’ so they can activate their coupons.
  • When they do this, persuade them to share the offer with their friends on Facebook and other social networks. Get these friends to contact you for coupons (leaving a few details for the database, naturally). And automatically enter everyone who ‘plays ball’ into a free prize draw to win something worthwhile – a meal a month for a year, maybe.
  • By now your database should be rising nicely in a digital marketing oven set to generate precisely the right environment for spectacular lead-generation.
  • The beauty of digital marketing is that – like all great recipes – it’s instantly measurable. So you can see exactly where your coupon redemptions come from: original mailshot or secondary networking.
  • And you can immediately work out who of your original 5,000 generated the most follow-on leads. Meaning that you can pinpoint your best influencers (your ‘brand evangelisers’) for future campaigns… and maybe even a thank-you reward.

Before you go, just consider these few points. Over one billion people use social networks today – that’s an awful lot of free influence you could be tapping into. People love being personally, rather than generically, addressed. And – however sophisticated technology has become – they still love getting something for nothing.

Mix these ingredients together in the right proportions and it’s pretty clear that you’re looking at a great starter for business success.

About Jason Groom

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