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Successful Restaurant Marketing Post-COVID

2 MINUTE READ | June 24, 2020

Successful Restaurant Marketing Post-COVID

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David Gong

With PMG since 2012, David Gong leads marketing initiatives at PMG, drawing on his past experience at agencies, publishers, and industry.

Restaurants across the country have started to slowly return to some semblance of normal, though what things were in the past will surely not be the same in the future. In an extensive article by Restaurant Dive, PMG’s Parks Blackwell shared her thoughts on what QSR marketers should consider when it reengages after the coronavirus crisis, besides the requisite items related to communicating policy changes and cleanliness practices.

Among her recommendations are:

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  • Brands must remember to still engage diners with their unique voices. “I think if a brand has it in its DNA to engage with consumers and customers in a more playful and light-hearted way… they will be some of the most successful because they recognize the opportunity to … provide some relief,” Blackwell said.

  • Remember that social platforms serve unique purposes. Twitter and Facebook aren’t the best places to post about new policies, and on Instagram, updating the brand’s bio with information about new policies and location info is better than a regular post or Instagram Story.

  • Make sure to keep (or create, if you don’t have one already) your Google My Business listing(s) updated with new hours, services, and the like. “Having that information directly at your fingertips is probably the most important and critical component of messaging right now,” she said.

  • Don’t add to the COVID-19 fatigue that’s developed with ads lately. Rather, find the right balance between community outreach and providing information about a restaurant’s operations. “We get it. You’re here for us. But can you tell me what I really need to know?” Blackwell said.

  • Use a tool to monitor social sentiment by location. This will allow chains to gauge overall commentary and engagement with evolving changes on a regional basis. As an example, “in states like Texas, half the population is excited about reopening and ready to get out while the other half isn’t ready to leave their homes,” Blackwell said, so understanding consumer sentiment by region will be important and should be reflected in paid media and messaging.