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  • 5 Future Marketing Trends for Quick-Service Restaurants

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    Marketing that matters

    Quick-service restaurants have never had to compete as hard for customer attention and business. As a result, quick-serves need to stay ahead of the game with marketing that gets them noticed, as well an effective long-term plan that drives growth, market share, and creates lasting customer loyalty to their brand. We’ll take a look at some of the marketing trends quick-service restaurants need to use in their future marketing strategies, as well as how they can implement them effectively.

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    Hyperlocal marketing for quick-serves

    Brands need to continuously attract repeat customers day after day. The products offered by quick-serves mean these customers are most likely found in a small radius around the restaurant. Hyperlocal marketing is a way to specifically market to people who live and work near the restaurant, targeting them with relevant offers and advertising. Going hyperlocal (often under a 1 mile radius) can really work; restaurants will not only be able to refine their menu to the local area based on hyperlocal trends, but they’ll also be able to specifically target potential customers close to their restaurant at key times. This will increase footfall, repeat custom, and long-term engagement with the restaurant.

    Real time geolocation tracking on smartphones has revolutionized possibilities for hyperlocal marketing. As well as “near-me” searches driven by Google, restaurants can also use Instagram and Snapchat to use geotags and local hashtags to create an individualized marketing plan for each restaurant location. Using business location targeting on Facebook is another way to use hyperlocal marketing effectively. 

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    Delivery apps have changed foodservice marketing forever

    Thanks to delivery apps, the way people want to receive their food has changed. While these have led to a potentially wider customer market, they’ve also increased competition for quick-service restaurants beyond their usual brick-and-mortar customer base. As well as restaurants being able to offer a fast, on-time delivery service; they need a stand-out digital marketing strategy, too. Engagement with their customers online is vital here. Quick-serves need to get great online reviews, as well as encouraging regular customer interaction with stellar social media content. 

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    Quick-serves need to embrace WiFi marketing

    WiFi marketing is now essential for all quick-service restaurants. Not only do customers now expect it, restaurants offering reliable, fast WiFi helps to increase footfall and loyalty among customers. Brands offering WiFi to customers can quickly build reliable, opted-in customer data, which can then be used to inform reliable, segmented marketing strategies.

    Customers logged in to free restaurant WiFi can be sent targeted special offers to be used in store immediately, increasing upsell potential. Using log-in data from when customers sign up is a great way to create a segmented, behavioral email or SMS marketing campaigns to encourage reviews, repeat visits with special offers or help to increase online engagement. Restaurants can also use proximity tracking with WiFi to monitor how long diners spend in their restaurants, providing valuable data to maximize restaurant efficiency.

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    Use the power of Snapchat marketing

    Snapchat gives quick-service restaurants the potential to run personality-infused campaigns that work on a local level, as well as increase levels of engagement with their brand. Concepts can send Snaps of new menu items, tempting food and drink and pictures of their restaurant to keep their followers engaged. Using geotags and geofilters adds a level of hyperlocal marketing for restaurants who want to attract local customers at key service times. Although Snapchat is a more relaxed social media platform, restaurants can use it to run sophisticated marketing campaigns, creating limited time offers for local diners and creating loyalty rewards just for their Snapchat friends. It’s a great interaction tool for creating long-term customer engagement and loyalty.

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    Quick-serves need video to share for engaging storytelling

    For any brand, offering great food quickly is no longer enough. Quick-service restaurants also need to offer emotionally compelling content that resonates with their customers. People who regularly use quick-serves tend to also be the main users of social media and mobile video, so using video as a storytelling tool is a great way to share engaging content. Restaurants can capture the power of video on Instagram Stories, Instagram Live, and Snapchat to share the story behind their food. For example, they can tell the story of the restaurant, share the passions and motivations of their team or go behind the scenes to share just what makes their menu bestseller so good. Great food is important, but emotional storytelling will keep customers coming back.

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    To wrap up

    Quick-service restaurants need to stay competitive, and so embracing marketing trends is essential. Social media, WiFI marketing and proximity tracking all offer brands the tools to create marketing campaigns that get them noticed, increasing footfall and creating a loyal customer base.

    Hannah Hambleton is the Content Manager for Beambox. Beambox works with thousands of small businesses to provide the perfect WiFi experience. Hannah writes about marketing trends for retailers and restaurants, giving them the insights to increase sales and customer engagement.