Sharing meals with family and friends has always been a social event. With the popularity of eating out at restaurants, social media is playing a major role in attracting new customers and maintaining loyalty of patrons.
Restaurants use social media to gain feedback and insight on menu items and service. They also update customers with new openings, promote contests, and monitor reputations by using multiple social platforms.
Below are 5 restaurants that are using social media as a menu for success:
Starbucks embraced social media early on and it didn’t hurt that drinking coffee was already a social activity. They offer quality products and promote social interaction with free WiFi in every location. But that is not where it stops. They use Facebook to inform their customers of new services and products instead of trying to sell them something. When Starbucks takes a photo, they post it on Facebook, tweet it on Twitter, share it on Instagram, and pin it on Pinterest. They also have a mystarbucksidea which is an online community where people can make suggestions and submit ideas to improve products and services.
Their unique way of using Twitter involves reaching out to customers that have complaints or negative feedback. They encourage dissatisfied customers to follow-up using a Twitter related email address. Call it tweeting damage control.
Babbo Ristorante is Mario Batali’s fine dining restaurant in New York. They post on Facebook daily with pictures of the fresh fish of the day, uncorking of wine, and behind the scenes from the chefs. They also embrace YouTube and Instagram to share videos and pictures of their food.
Barbbos uses Twitter to notify their patrons of any cancellations and include the times and availability for guests.
The Hard Rock Cafe devotes a whole page on their website to social media engagement. “Get social with 13 million strong” is proudly displayed on their social page with links to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, Google+, and YouTube. No rock is left unturned. They encourage fans to tag their pics with popular hashtags and provide a convenient upload button.
The breakfast diner chain Denny’s openly invites their fans to “stalk us online”. One can stalk them by using Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, and YouTube. They always engage their fans with interesting and creative content and displays their social media in the center of their website’s homepage.
Six months ago, they launched a Hispanic Facebook page that already has acquired 53,000 likes. They maintain a Tumblr page to reach a younger crowd. In addition, they are introducing an animated YouTube series called “The Grand Slams” premiering soon.
Jack in the Box social media presence is for those that “like” fast food and snarky updates. They use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Tumblr to promote their food and the Jack character.
Last month, Jack in the Box achieved a Guinness World Record tile by setting the record for the largest coupon. It measured 80 feet tall by 25 feet wide. The coupon was carried down the street to a Jack in the Box drive thru, redeemed, then hung on a high-rise building. Fans were encouraged take a picture to redeem the coupon and to share the coupon socially on Twitter using #WorldsLargestCoupon.