Chelsea Allenby is a Digital Marketer of 9 years and Managing Director of Allenby Digital Ltd, an online marketing agency she set-up in 2015, specialising in social media and content marketing. www.chelseamarketing.co.uk
Building a Facebook community isn’t simply about getting more people to ‘like’ your restaurant’s business page. A social community is a group of people who are genuinely interested and engaged with your brand online. They truly care about the things that are happening in relation to your brand, or the things you have to say as a social influencer. Having this type of invested community is extremely beneficial; it helps establish your reputation and reach more potential customers.
Run a competition to Collect User-Generated Content
User-generated content can be anything from images, videos or written content that has been created by a social media user about your restaurant. This type of content is especially valuable because people trust what other people have to say. If someone shares a great photo of their food and recommends your restaurant to their friends, it’s going to be respected as an honest opinion.
As a social media marketer, you can influence the submission of this type of content. Running a simple competition and asking previous customers to share photos of their experience could be one idea. In return, you could offer a voucher for two free meals. Each time someone enters, at least a handful of their friends will see their post about your restaurant. As if this wasn’t enough, you can later use the images for future promotions, or post them on your Instagram page too.
Share Relatable Content & Invite Engagers to the Page
If you’ve ever spent any amount of time on social media, you will have come across those ‘viral posts’. The ones that have reached you because thousands or even millions of other people have already engaged with it. Often, the thing that these posts have in common is humour. They are usually funny and/or relatable to a lot of people. Sharing this type of content on your page usually results in a higher number of people interacting. A unique feature on Facebook is the ability to invite those who have interacted, to ‘like’ your restaurant’s page if they haven’t already done so.
Social media is not a one-way street, Interaction needs to occur in order to build really meaningful discussions around your brand and in turn, help build your community. Use Facebook to ask questions direct to your fanbase. Don’t simply ask for the sake of asking, use them to your benefit. Ask customers what they thought of the menu to gather feedback, or ask them what they’d like to see on your new menu. These types of interactions not only help to spread the content further, they also provide valuable information for your business.
Show Personality & Have Fun
The better the content you share, the quicker your fanbase will increase. Each time you earn a new ‘like’ on your page it’s because you shared something awesome. The content you share really does drive the success of social media. Try to have some fun on Facebook and show some personality by sharing funny or relatable images and videos.
Post Daily & Keep the Page Active
A regular flow of content posted at least once a day will keep your page active and increase the overall ‘reach’ of the things you share. The ‘reach’ simply refers to the number of people your content or page reached within a week. You can see this information down the right-hand side of the page when logged in as the page admin on a desktop.
Try Facebook Advertising
Facebook advertising is brilliant for reaching a wider audience. Typically when you post something to your branded page, Facebook will distribute it to just 1-2% of your fanbase. This number will increase based on who initially interacts with each post. Even with a good level of interaction it’s unlikely that piece of content will reach its full potential. With the help of paid advertising, you can get your best promotions in front of thousands of people. You don’t even need a large budget to benefit from Facebook advertising. Find out more in this quick guide to Facebook ads for your restaurant.
What works for one business might not necessarily work for another, especially from industry to industry. However, it’s useful to visit some of your favourite brands and organisations on Facebook to find out what they’re doing to keep you interested. Take inspiration and learn from other companies, but always remember to be yourself and showcase your unique personality on this brilliant platform.