It’s an open industry secret that marketing costs continue to rise as traditional mediums of advertising (billboards, radio ads, commercials, et cetera) are less reliable as tangible sources of increased business and revenue. Customers consume advertising on a host of platforms that many restaurateurs are just beginning to utilize, mostly online and through mobile apps.
Beyond social networking campaigns, however, there’s another advertising ace-in-the-hole that’s extremely cost effective: guerrilla marketing. Take this restaurant marketing strategy to heart and you’ll be able to save big while reaching a new base of potential customers.
What is guerilla marketing, precisely? It simply entails out-of-the-box and unconventional marketing tactics, either in the real or virtual world, that focus on maximum exposure at a low cost. When going the route of guerrilla marketing, it’s essential to choose a target demographic for your campaign, outline a plan of action (a campaign that lasts a few months is substantially more effective than a few disjointed tweets), and stick to your plan.
Guerrilla marketing can be a bit disruptive, but gets the message across. One great example of an underground restaurant marketing strategy that was implemented by a small restaurant owner to great success was a “kabob” campaign: essentially, employees of the restaurant placed kabobs that served as the restaurant’s signature dish into car windows where most advertisers would stick flyers. Accompanied with a restaurant sticker, the free food advertising was unforgettable, a big hit, and incredibly cheap.
One benefit of guerrilla marketing campaigns today is that you can affix any campaign with a hashtag and start a discussion on Twitter and other social media sites. If you have a performance artist memorably combining a piece with a bold product or slogan in a highly trafficked public area near your restaurant or bar, and blanket the area with stickers along with a hashtag relevant to your campaign, countless customers will check out your restaurant or bar from sheer curiosity.
The key to this restaurant marketing strategy is to be aggressive, yet enticing. Draw a customer in, but leave a little mystery. A vague yet striking flyer works wonders, as does street art. Hiring a local street artist to begin an underground marketing campaign adds authenticity and vigor to your advertising, and draws in a younger crowd. Go all in on your next guerrilla marketing campaign – it’s inexpensive compared to traditional means, and can yield markedly better results.