Opening up the doors to a new restaurant is an exciting, yet scary and monumental task. Keeping it running requires extensive work.

What’s saddening is the reality that 60 percent of new restaurants fail within the first year. More so, a disappointing 80 percent go out of business before their 5th year. Many factors contribute to this high failure rate such as location, inexperience, lack of accounting or management skills and marketing execution. But here’s the best new; there are ways to make the business more sustainable.

Unfortunately, many restaurant owners today overlook some of the top 5 restaurant marketing mistakes that could very well destroy their profits and interfere with their restaurant’s success.

Let’s find out these mistakes and how to avoid them for a profitable restaurant business.

1. You Don’t Have a Communication Crisis Plan

Many restaurants are unprepared to deal with catastrophic situations. This can be the last nail in the coffin for your restaurant, especially once news reaches the public.

What is your protocol when someone contacts you because;

  • They feel you’re responsible for their severe food poisoning?
  • Your customer is injured because he stepped on broken glass?
  • Your employee decided to serve a guest an excessive amount of alcohol resulting him or her to drink and drive causing an accident or even worse, killing someone else and possibly themselves?

Be proactive, create a plan and do your research. Train your staff on how to handle such catastrophic situations. Here are a few examples for further demonstration; (AABlog).

2. You Don’t Have a Website

Having a running website should be part of your marketing strategy. According to FSR Magazine, 80 percent of customers believe it’s important to see a restaurant menu before dining.

Another finding suggested that 62 percent agreed that if they are not able to view a menu on their mobile device, then they are less likely to choose a restaurant. And, 81 percent have searched for a restaurant on a mobile app in the last six months. Another 92 percent of consumers have searched for a restaurant online in the last six months. (FSR Magazine)

3. Neglecting Your Customer Base

The idea to attract new customers is great, but you’d also want to pay attention to your existing customer base. 86 percent of consumers agree that loyalty is primarily driven by likeability. Think about it for a second; if your guests don’t feel taken care of well, then they may have no problem opting for a different service provider.

Ask yourself, whether they receiving the level of customer services they expect? Besides, 83 percent of customers believe that loyalty is driven by trust. Customers want to feel confident that you will consistently deliver desirable quality services. To achieve this ensure that you;

  • Get to know your customer base and assess the type of quality of a business is delivered by each guest.
  • Find out which customers have potential to provide more business.
  • Come up with competitive prices and stay up to date with your product availability.

Don’t forget to strengthen your customer relationships by coming up with a customer loyalty program that includes promotions, thank you coupons and deals.

4. Using One Marketing Method

Photo courtesy of Pexels Images by muneebfarman

Sticking to one marketing method isn’t quite effective as using several. Multiple marketing methods reinforce each other. Therefore, be open to trying out different marketing tactics.

Remember, your competitors are testing different methods as well. Make sure that you’re staying ahead of the game and keeping up with your competition. This may consist of:

  • Offering specials via social media
  • Creating contests
  • Reaching out to your local community
  • Building an email contact list
  • Looking into the new trend
  • Text message marketing

5. Failing to Track Your Results

Tracking your marketing efforts is significantly crucial. It’s your bread and butter! This will measure what’s working and who’s interested instead of making educated guesses. It’ll allow you to set realistic marketing goals.

Many restaurants make a mistake of sending out special promotions and announcing new dishes without tracking their results. If you don’t track your progress, then you’ll never have a clue if your marketing efforts are really paying off.

Here are some commendable marketing software tools that you can use:


Photo courtesy of Pexels Images by Lukas

As a restaurant owner, you wear many hats. And often, you may be overwhelmed with the demands of running your restaurant, leaving you vulnerable to blunders. Even so, with all the stress and chaos in the mix, you must remain focused on the price!

Along the way come inevitable mistakes, whether you’re a rookie or an experienced restaurateur. As scary as it might be, the only way we succeed is if we fail. No matter what, your marketing mistakes play a major role in your restaurant’s success.

Put your best effort, consider these tips and avoid committing marketing mistakes. And while we are at it, check these amazing expert business plan ideas to help you plan your restaurant better.

Contribution by:

Kulture Konnect Marketing & Design Studio specializes in restaurant marketing, branding, content marketing, digital marketing, social media marketing, websites and more. Whether you’re a start-up or an established company, we’re ready to increase your value and take your brand to the next level.