3 restaurant marketing obstacles to avoid to be profitable

Posted on 02/25/2018 on Marketing Tips


To be successful in today’s economy you are going to have to move away from a transactional model and towards a repeat business one through restaurant marketing.

For many in the restaurant and food industry that is a massive mindset shift. Why? Because it means accepting that having good food and good service on their own is not good enough!

When you clear each of these obstacles with ease you will be well on your way to success.


Restaurant Marketing Obstacle No. 1: You Think Like A Restaurateur!


No insult intended. Einstein is quoted as having said, “The last to know about water are the fish” meaning they are so absorbed in the stuff that they have no sense of the world outside of it.

This is the same for the majority of restaurateurs. You spend so much time inside the four walls of your business, mentally as well as physically, that you find it hard to think ‘outside of that box’.

Often times, restaurateurs think like restaurateurs and not like business owners who happen to have chosen a restaurant as a vehicle to make them money.

To have a highly successful business you are going to have to think about your business and restaurant marketing from a business perspective. You are going to have to make decisions based what makes you money, as opposed to what makes you feel good.


Restaurant Marketing Obstacle No. 2: Believing Good Food And Service Is All You Need For Success!

it takes more than just good service and great food to make a resto successful. restaurant marketing is key to success.
In a perfect world providing your customers with good food and service should be enough but it isn’t. Every year hundreds of restaurateurs who have good food and good service close their doors for the final time. Their business, dreams and lives are often left in ruins because they never got over this obstacle.

Even great food and service doesn’t guarantee success, remember Gordon Ramsay‘s Maze restaurant in Melbourne? It did $14 million in sales in its penultimate year and still closed with debts, Tony Bilson‘s Bilsons Restaurant which received its third chef’s hat in 2011, closed four days later?

There is more to the restaurant business than having good product. In order to be successful you must get over this obstacle. It pays to patiently learn restaurant marketing, prudently invest in it and diligently employ marketing tactics that have been seen to work for restaurants.


Restaurant Marketing Obstacle No. 3: The Kevin Costner Myth “If I Build It They Will Come!”

empty restaurant needing restaurant marketing to bring more bums on seats

I cannot tell you how many times I have had to convince a restaurant owner that restaurant marketing is a normal part of business and just because he/she has opened their doors doesn’t mean that anyone will come in.

You probably work within your four walls for anything up to 100 hours a week and consequently your world view becomes very narrow. Your restaurant consumes most of your waking hours, your thoughts and your energy, and it isn’t surprising that you lose touch with the realities of life for your customers and prospects.

You worry about bills, staffing, suppliers, empty seats, red tape, compliance, reviews, cleaning, repairs, etc. Your customers are concerned about getting to work on time, their kid’s lunch, their partner’s health, their home loan repayments, their job security and so on. Your restaurant is nowhere near their radar! So just because you ‘built it’ doesn’t mean they will come. You have to make them want to come by inviting them to do so. And you have to keep reminding them that you are there time and time again.

Source: More Bums On Seats; Five Steps to a Highly Successful Restaurant Second Edition by Howard Tinker.


Leave A Reply