Critical Planning and Communication for Restaurants Today

    It’s a time to remember that food is more than just sustenance, even under the most trying circumstances.

    A take-out sign in front of a restaurant.

    pexels/Tim Mossholder

    Delivery and takeout are playing a critical role for operators.

    Pick-up/delivery has literally become the price of entry. Every open restaurant, on Seamless/Grubhub or otherwise, needs to address our current climate and the measures taken to #preventinfection. Your story needs to go beyond that. It’s a time to remember that food is more than just sustenance, even under the most trying circumstances.

    READ PART ONE: Coronavirus Crisis Communications for Restaurants: A Checklist

    First and foremost, make sure your site is updated with your most current info and social handles. You need to address the present situation and answer the easy questions (e.g. When are you open? What is your delivery menu?), and the situational (e.g. Can I have a contact free delivery?) You need presence on the consumer big 3: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. Communicate, here in a way that anticipates your customer’s questions and needs, but also reminds them that food is joyful. Even though we are separate food still brings us together.

    Menu Modifications

    Your dine-in menu probably differs from your take out menu. Some things have never traveled  well. This a time to streamline your own food orders (supply chain/less waste) and address a specific consumer need: Delivery. It’s a time to be creative in menu modification … encourage leftovers. Create family-style meals, kid’s specials … Start a conversation about all of this #stayhome #diningin

    Purpose

    In this time there only one true purpose. Feeding people and helping them survive. You are committed to doing this. Any perishables or unused shelf stable food should be donated to local food banks.

    Your Community/Your Team

    Embrace community websites as places for conversation. Pull your team into the spotlight, they’re helping you get it done. Let them get creative with storytelling. #kitchen stories #deliverystories 

    Susie Fogelson is a founder of F&Co, an f&b branding consultancy and a partner at Throughco Communications, a crisis communications and marketing firm.