Technology is increasingly becoming an important part of restaurant marketing. For over a decade, Fortune 500 companies have been harnessing the power of tech like artificial intelligence (AI), but it’s only been in recent years that tools like this have become more accessible to independent operators.
One of the biggest opportunities to leverage technology for your restaurant business is in local advertising. Managing digital marketing campaigns for even one location across dozens of websites and social platforms has traditionally been a complicated, time-consuming, and expensive endeavor. It’s an even more daunting endeavor for large multi-unit operators of franchise brands. But over the last several years, automation has shaken up the restaurant advertising industry. Gone is the need to spend hours manually reporting and optimizing ad spend, allowing teams to get back out on the floor and do what they do best—serving customers.
So, what exactly is automation? Automation is a process or procedure performed with minimal human assistance. One example is an app-based marketing platform that uses AI and machine learning to automate digital advertising. It can help bring efficiency, scale, and cost-efficiency to local restaurant marketing.
Here are three ways in which automation can save restaurants time and money:
Many businesses manually develop and execute their marketing and advertising campaigns one by one on each of their social media channels. While social media is effective, investing in one channel alone is only a small piece of a consumer’s behavior. Investing in a holistic digital strategy based on where your consumers are online (Google search, thousands of top websites, online video, and social media) will maximize your marketing investment. To try to pull this off manually simply just isn’t efficient in today’s unconnected digital media environment. With automation, these efforts can be streamlined to simplify the process of the manual work—a “one-stop-shop” solution.
Today, there are powerful platforms designed to build and execute time-tested marketing strategies to improve a company’s performance across any possible online platform. Not only does this help small businesses execute their advertising efforts effortlessly, but also, they’re able to make more money, bring in more customers, and gain higher market share in their industry or category. The increase in efficiency allows business owners to worry about strategy—not calling vendors or manually inputting data into spreadsheets or reports.
The term “scale” is often thrown around in marketing and advertising. How can we scale? How can we get marketing to scale? The key ingredient to “scaling” a market is through automation. In marketing, software acts as the automatic control to automate many of the functions that businesses can be left to figure out themselves such as ad creative, ad targeting, optimization, and analytics. Businesses should worry about serving their customers—while allowing marketing technology to do its job.
Eliminating the manual process of calling vendors, filtering through online opportunities, creating individualized ads for each platform, and extensively examining results doesn’t only decrease efficiency, it eats up the actual cost of their marketing investment. In local marketing, budgets are often less sizable compared to national budgets making every dollar count. The more fees taken from your media buy—the less you have to reach your ideal consumers. “Working media”, is the amount of media that actually goes towards your brand’s advertising impressions, less fees.
Partnering with a marketing technology company can have its advantages from a cost perspective as SaaS platforms only require a fixed fee, versus paying a percentage of your spend, which will rise based on your advertising budget.
To sum it up, the result of using automation in advertising is an increase in overall efficiency, organizational resource flexibility, and a direct savings to your marketing expenditure bottom line. Let the technology handle the legwork while the business focuses on the bigger picture and strategy instead of scrambling to find time digging through reports or figuring out what to do next. Companies that adapt their digital marketing methods to what’s currently happening in marketing technology today will have a greater chance of excelling in their marketing efforts and opportunity to grow greater market share.