Takeout and Delivery Best Practices: Marketing

Takeout and Delivery Best Practices: Marketing

How to get the word out about your takeout and delivery business.

This post will be updated frequently to share more of the innovative ideas we’re seeing daily from restaurants of all sizes across the industry. Check back for more inspiration!

Hi restaurant professionals: we’re keeping an eye out for great ideas from around the industry about how to quickly and effectively boost your takeout and delivery business, and combining those with our own off-premise know-how to create a to-do list of steps to get your off-premise channels online and successful. These are our marketing tips, but we also have lists to help you get started, track what’s going on, and support your employees.

This is essentially all about making sure your customers know where and how to order from you now that they’re out of the norm. If they like you, they’re looking for it, so let’s make it easy for them to know you’re still open for business.

If you have a question or want to contribute your own best practice to this running post, you can contact us at community@kitchenunited.com.

All right then, let’s buckle down and get going:

Be straightforward with your community while offering them a further reason to come in (employee support, new items, etc). People are understanding and want to help keep you running.

Messaging

Let your customers know you’re open for takeout and you need them to be there for you. Be transparent about the situation but also clarify your temporary value prop. Keep it simple and honest, and though it can be hard to feel very hopeful, include an element of hopefulness so your customers know you’re all right. It’s totally okay to ask for a little help (and remember, you’re helping them, too). Talking points include:

  • Get out of the house! Safely, that is.
  • You can still eat restaurant quality food at home.
  • Don’t cook for one night.
  • Support the places you love in a difficult time. 

Stay in touch with your staying-at-home customers; keep your posts informative and conversational.

Social

  • Post constant updates about operational, hours, and/or menu changes. If you’re still open for takeout, make the ordering channels clear.
  • Instagram and Facebook are your best platforms. Here some examples:

Website

  • Post a pop-up or announcement communication at the top of your site.

  • Bring your to-go section or link to to the top of your homepage where people will see it first thing
  • Add an email entry form or field to your pop up, or somewhere on your homepage. We’re all realizing how important it is to have other forms of contact with our customers!Here’s an example from Pacific Standard Time in Chicago.

A pop up on your website helps directly answer the questions everyone is looking for: Are you still open? How do I order?

Email/Mailers/Flyers

  • A little more flexibility, take your time to clearly state the situation and how you can help your customers, and how they can help you. Build your community.
  • Use your email lists: if you’re on Opentable, you can easily download your Opentable email subscriber list as a CSVNote: Yes, these customers have opted-in to receive promotional emails from your restaurant.
  • Here’s an example email from Pacific Standard Time in Chicago.

If you’ve not done email marketing before, it’s the time to start. And keep sending as you update your operations, promotions, and menu.

Voicemail

  • Make sure to mention:
    • Your new hours
    • How people can order
    • Any new items or specials to-go
    • Thank you for thinking of us!

Promotions

  • Gift cards for now & later: “Get $20 off your first pickup order, get a $20 gift card for when the dining room re-opens!”
  • “Dining bonds”: Delayed-redemption gift cards that consumers purchase now for lower value than when they redeem. This can help you stack bookings for whenever you get the greenlight to re-open, and get you a little income in the near-term.

If you missed it, our Getting Started page has more helpful tips for launching your takeout business on the right foot.

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