The goals of this program are to increase customer loyalty and drive store traffic not only through promotions but also through raising the general level of conversation surrounding the brand online.
This month, as a tie-in to the creamy tomato soup menu highlight, fans on Facebook are encouraged to visit the site to play a “memory game” and to share their favorite childhood food memories. Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes’ and Red Door Interactive’s intention of this initiative is to listen, engage and quickly responding to customer interests and inquiries.
“We pride ourselves in providing a delicious, healthy, community environment at each of our locations,” said Ginger Anderson, Web Manager and Graphic Designer for Garden Fresh Corp, the parent company of Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes.
“A great deal of our customers as well as their friends and family have created strong bonds on Twitter and Facebook, so it makes perfect sense for us to be there. We feel privileged for each follower and fan we’ve connected with online.”
In the month since the company’s official foray into the social networking world, Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes has more than tripled their Twitter followers, and now boasts more than 800 connections on the micro-blog site.
The restaurant chain’s Facebook page includes fan photos, activity of the message boards, and currently holds more than 450 fans with new connections made daily.
As important, the company’s recent Valentines Day social media campaign, where individuals were invited to tell Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes, via Twitter, just what made their “Sweetie so Sweet,” resulted in a 12 percent conversion rate, with people either purchasing a gift card, conducting a location search, or signing up to Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes’ email list.
The company’s Twitter and Facebook presences are also promoted and integrated in a number of ways, including in various e-mail notices as well as its Web site. This provides Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes’ loyal “Club Veg” subscribers exposure to the new ways in which they can interact with the restaurant chain and receive the heads up on things like special offers and new menu items.
“From a business perspective, Facebook, Twitter, and other social network sites are forms of permission marketing, where tailored promotion and awareness campaigns can result in customer insight and relevant connections with targeted audiences,” says Crosby Noricks, social media strategist for Red Door Interactive.
“Not only can significant response and conversion rates ensue, but the responses, comments, and discussions taking place on such outlets can also empower companies with the ability to better listen to their customers and take quick action on emerging service issues and needs. It’s all about giving customers choices on how to engage with organizations.”