There are many chapters to success with online marketing (yes, there is a book being developed). There are also many chapters in building the right long-term strategy. We start at the beginning here. Chapter 1 is taking control of your brand (or taking back control in some cases!).
For years, I’ve found the customers I’ve helped (some really smart restaurant owners) have been successful without ever controlling their brand image (more so, the image outside of the restaurant walls aka 4-walls marketing). That shows how great they are at being an efficient and successful restaurant operator, despite their lack of marketing knowledge as the world changes.
Today, these very intelligent owners have come to me because they realize times have changed faster than they can keep up with. They lack the time to learn these new skills and stay ahead of the curve. On top of it, their attempt at hiring a cheap college intern failed miserably because this isn’t just about posting on Facebook and Twitter. This is about BUILDING A REAL STRATEGY AND ONLINE INFRASTRUCTURE. Posting on Facebook and Twitter isn’t a Branding Strategy in itself. Let me repeat: Just posting on Facebook and Twitter is not a strategy in itself (incase you skimmed over my previous statement). You must think much deeper on this. Random posting on Facebook and Twitter isn’t a Strategic Online Infrastructure that reaps you benefits (loyal repeat customers and constant data flowing back to you to help make good decisions from). There is so much more to just putting out a random post.
The difference between RBS and everyone else is we actually build a strategy for you. We are not selling you a random posting service. If you want a posting service, there are many “marketing companies” out there that will show you a video that looks pretty cool and tells you that marketing is about posting a cool video or photo online. If you want to believe that is true, I wish you the best of luck. For the rest of you, continue reading below.
The Online World changes so fast that it’s a full-time job just to keep up. The independent business owners that keep up can hold a competitive advantage over large corporations. Larger corporations require more time (more red tape) to implement change, but you can implement change fast. Your advantage is that you can move fast to gain market share while others are moving substantially slower. Many times these businesses are so strong (think Sears as it nears bankruptcy), that they are complacent to making changes until much later when it’s too late. Don’t be the business owner that waited until it’s too late. These online tools and strategies are the future that allows a small business to grow, despite having competition that is significantly larger. We, at RBS, stay up-to-date on the changes so you can focus on your restaurant operations (and you’ll need to because we’re going to attract you new customers that you will need to make happy else they are going to run to Yelp! joking). What I’m not joking about is that it is not uncommon to get a 10% or more sales increase in the beginning. Once we install a basic strategy and online ordering system (yes, all cases are unique, but if you don’t have any online presence, the low hanging fruit can really obtain you a nice sales surge in the early phases). The strategy is in building your book of business (your loyal customers). You want repeat customers, customers who attract you new customers (leveraging your credible relationship with your happy customers to gain more customers), etc… This is just one reason why posting aimlessly isn’t a strategy except to destroy your brand. One bad post and it’s all over for you. Don’t let some college kid or stranger run your brand. Just google the disaster stories if you don’t believe me.
Since this is not a posting service, we are Online Strategists, these game-plans that we create will gain more value over time. The strategy needs time to play out as you’re playing to win in the long-term. We’re building you a car and in time, you should be able to drive it yourself.
Think of it this way, using a traditional marketing example: If you put a billboard up for the first time, you’ll get a bunch of customers. Do you actually know how many saw that billboard (not a guess, a real accurate number). Do you know how many people went to your website and engaged with it due to the billboard? Do you know how many new customers it attracted versus repeat customers? Do you know what the cost was to attract those customers? No, you don’t know any of those answers. That is because traditional marketing has it’s place, but you need more. You need to make up at least 50% of your marketing strategy and budget with an online infrastructure that allows you to answer all those questions, analyze, and improve!