Twitter Basics for Bars and Restaurants
How familiar are you with Twitter? Are you using the Twitterverse to find new customers and drive repeat business? With over half a million active Twitter users you simply cannot ignore this social media medium anymore. We’re here to help with the basics and provide tips on using social media effectively!
Tweet, what’s that?
For starters you need to know exactly what a tweet is and why you should be using them. A tweet is any message you send out into the Twitterverse, and can contain a maximum of 140 characters. This means all of your messages need to be short and sweet, but don’t worry, an effective tweet can gain you a lot of impressions.
The infamous @
Think of the @ symbol as an address. You want to send a message out to a customer that had a great time in your bar last night? Try, “Hey @JohnDoe! Glad you had fun with us last night, come back tonight for more @Buzztime trivia at 8:00pm”
Not your parents’ # sign
This hashtag takes on a whole new meaning on Twitter and is a bit like a searchable headline or reference. Create your own tag for your customers to use, or capitalize on popular tags to make your brand a part of the conversation. For instance, we use #triviaChamp when promoting our Buzztime trivia entertainment for bars and restaurants, while an Irish pub may use #Guinness to get in on a popular topic that is relevant to their business.
Last but definitely not least, RT
Do you like something on Twitter? RT stands for retweet and is used when passing along content to the rest of your followers. The best way to make the most impressions on Twitter is to craft interesting content that users will want to RT for their followers.
Now that you have the basics down, how exactly do you use Twitter to help your bar?
Twitter posts are less like a sales pitch, and more like a conversation. No one is going to want to RT your slogan, but they’ll be sure to send along funny commentary or even a great coupon! Use these tips to create tweets that will result in positive results for your bar or restaurant.
If you have something to say that is only relevant in the moment, get it out there fast with a tweet. Comment on local or national news, sporting events, or even your customers’ personal accomplishments. Did one of your followers just get a promotion? Send out a message inviting them to celebrate with you!
Who doesn’t like a great coupon? The millennial generation is being labeled as social media savvy and bargain hunters. Make the best of it by offering a promotion code; if it’s good enough your followers will RT and you will gain exponentially more impressions.
Short videos are becoming increasingly popular among Twitter users and are a fantastic way to engage your following. Tweets embedded with video get more attention and are retweeted more often. Use Vine to create short six-second looping videos that embed easily into tweets. Try creating something fun like your servers doing a song and dance!
Want to know you customers a little better? Ask them anything you want and reap the benefits. Just don’t forget that asking a question is only one side of the conversation and follow up with relevant commentary.
Pictures are worth a thousand tweets
Twitter users share photos of themselves, friends, food, and anything that excites them. Use Twitter to relate to your target customers by sharing similar content. Snap a photo of a menu item, a special guest, or some fancy decorations. Having a party? You must share that experience with your followers. Be sure to use a consistent # that your customers can adopt. The more you share with them, the more they’ll share with you; which is the goal.
Remember that Twitter is not the best tool for selling at your customer, rather a way of talking someone that may want to come into your bar. Sharing a funny joke, photos of guests and staff having a great time, or posing a question are great ways to start the conversation.