Have you hit the social media wall?
I am sure that you have come to a point in your business where you feel that advertising on social media has hit a standstill. And it is not your fault. Social media is designed to have flaws to keep the end-user’s curiosity active and return for more. But these flaws are not beneficial for the business owner that relies on these platforms to survive day to day from their customer base. The G.R.O.W. Digital marketing Framework is the solution for you to break from social media grasps and grow your business online. With our G.R.O.W. Digital Marketing Framework we will create a loyal and profitable customer base that will increase your business’s traffic and income in 2020.
As a restaurant owner, you realize that social media’s primary objective is to make money from advertisements. Your mind will shift from using social media as leisure to business. And the more you can keep your followers entertained, the more reach they will reward you. It is a complex algorithm that is at the core of their business model.
As I started to research digital marketing and apply it, I noticed that not many local restaurants knew about digital marketing. They knew the necessary social media terminology, but they were entirely in the dark when it came to Google, websites, and newsletters.
I began to research different tools, conduct surveys, and start helping businesses. After gathering all of that data, G.R.O.W. Framework for restaurants was born.
So what is G.R.O.W. for restaurants?
G.R.O.W. is a framework that we apply to businesses to:
- increase their online presence
- establish reliable income through online tools and strategies
G.R.O.W. combines processes, tools, and analytics that allow the restaurant owner to follow the guideline to help them grow their business online.
I took all of my knowledge and experience. I compacted everything to map an easy-to-understand process that could help any business grow its online revenue. This framework can also be implemented to help other industries grow their online presence, not just restaurants.
Gain Reliable Online wealth. So what does this mean?
The first step in growing your business is Gaining more followers and expanding your restaurant’s reach by creating consistency with your online presence.
Once we set the foundation with creating consistency online, the second step to G.R.O.W. is to generate a Reliable and loyal customer base.
In the third step, Online, I will explain how to expand your online platforms and create independence by owning your online traffic.
And the final step is Wealth. In this step, I will explain how to use different tools to increase your business’s income. This fundamental includes investing in ads and gaining a strong and consistent return on investment.
In the following article, my goal is to convince you that you can create a strong and loyal customer base by using online tools. This strong base, in turn, will create a consistent revenue flow to your business.
This is the purpose of G.R.O.W.
I will review a general overview of G.R.O.W. for you to get a good idea of what our goal is. And how this framework can help your business increase your income with online marketing.
And now, to the first fundamental of the G.R.O.W. framework: Gain.
Your competitors have thousands of followers that receive hundreds of likes on each post. And you are still trying to figure out the magical secret to draw all of this engagement to your restaurant as well.
I am here to tell you that there is no secret. It is only having your social media in order and creating a consistent brand online.
Yes, it’s that simple. Your brand is what sells. And social media is 100% about branding. So why wouldn’t you use it as your primary advertising platform, correct?
Social media is the number one source of advertising for small businesses—especially restaurants. But many restaurants take the power of social media for granted.
To grow your restaurant’s brand online, first, your information needs to be consistent everywhere online. And then you need good content.
Suppose your address on Facebook does not match your address information in Google. In that case, you could have great content, but your customers wouldn’t know where your restaurant is.
This detail is the reason the first fundamental in G.R.O.W. is Gain.
Google is the main force that drives traffic to your business.
Most people focus only on social media because of the direct connection to the customer. But after a customer decides that they want to visit your restaurant when seeing your social media account, they turn to google for directions and more information.
And yes, social media is still a robust digital marketing necessity for a restaurant, but the real traffic that visits your business flows in from Google Search.
The first seed in G.R.O.W. is an Online Audit
Our first step in implementing Gain for your restaurant is to conduct an extensive online audit of your business.
Imagine going to a doctor’s office, and before you even see the doctors, the receptionist is already selling you the medicine. This is crazy, right? How can you be prescribed the drug without the doctors seeing you and telling you what is wrong or not wrong?
This is the same approach that we take in applying G.R.O.W.
First, We start with a social media and google audit, find where it hurts, and identify where we should focus on creating the most significant impact and cure your pain.
The focus of our audits are on four main categories that have the most impact on their advertising efforts. We give each category a grade from A to F and group each issue with an urgency index from Low to Critical.
We focus on the leading platforms that are currently driving the majority of traffic online.
Gain In Google My Business.
We cannot talk about G.M.B. without talking about what is Local SEO.
Local SEO stands for Local Search Engine Optimization.
This is the process of optimizing your online presence in Google to increase your restaurant’s chances of ranking high in local search results.
When a potential customer searches for “pizza near me,” the quality of your local SEO is what creates the potential for your restaurant to rank higher in the results.
By optimizing Local SEO, you will improve the chances that your restaurant will appear in any searches done within a specific geographical location from where the search was conducted.
So you can see that by increasing their chances to appear higher in the search results, we will drastically increase their restaurant’s visibility.
The only way to improve the restaurant’s rankings is to have Google My Business profile consistent and active with the most updated information.
As a restaurant owner, your priority should always attract more customers to visit your store and purchase your product.
The ultimate goal of local SEO is to appear in Google’s three-pack suggestions.
When you search in google for a restaurant or type of food, you get three results associated with your search at the top of the search results.
These are called the Google Three Pack.
Appearing in the Google three Pack can boost the traffic to your restaurant by 700%. So it is clear that if we place all of our focus on Google Three-pack, it can immediately impact your business.
By optimizing your Google My Business profile, you will increase the odds of your restaurant appearing in the Google Three-pack.
When we apply Gain for Google My Business, we make sure to optimize every inch so that your business can increase local traffic.
While G.M.B. can attract new customers, social media will solidify your online brand and grow your audience.
Your information on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, and other social media platforms, has to be in sync.
This primarily means that your username needs to match on all of the platforms.
This is a common mistake that I notice with many social media business accounts.
Your profile link handle is the @name that you use on your social media profiles. I cannot stress enough how critical it is to ensure that our online presence is in sync.
Not only does it make it easier for people to find you online, but it also improves your Google rankings and online credibility.
On various occasions, I have seen that when searching for a restaurant on Google, you immediately find their Facebook profile. Still, their Instagram and other social media are on the second or third page.
This is usually because their profile handles do not match, and Google cannot associate the two accounts. This is the same case for your customers. It is much easier to advertise your business as “@name across all platforms.” Then @name on Facebook, @name2 on Instagram and Twitter, and @name3 on YouTube.
When you open your accounts and search for an excellent online name, remember that this is your online business name. Just how you have your common business name outside of your restaurant above the entrance.
Your social media @name is your online business name that people search for when looking for you online.
But what if i couldn't find the same username in both platforms?
And I get it. Maybe you created your Instagram after your Facebook, and the name wasn’t available. But it is never too late to sync the profile names.
I typically suggest that if you change your Instagram name instead of your Facebook. Facebook has more influence in Google rankings, and evolving this name could affect your restaurant.
I hope you can see why Gain lays the foundation for your restaurant to proceed with the G.R.O.W. framework.
Without creating a solid base of consistency, you cannot continue to build a robust online business.
When we apply the gain fundamental in your business, we include more optimization tools to increase the consistency of your information.
Reliability means creating a bond with your customers by providing consistent and valuable content that will increase loyalty and, later, a steady income.
There are various ways that we can create value in your content. But in this chapter, I want to detail aspects of your digital marketing that can increase your restaurant’s value as soon as possible.
- Social Media Post Scheduling
- Facebook Reviews
- Social Media Analytics
But before jumping into how you can create a more loyal following with Reliable, you need to identify who your customer is.
And yes, I am sure you are thinking, well, I want everyone to be my customer. But if you could pick out a customer that you know would follow you off a cliff, who would it be?
When we apply the Reliable fundamental for restaurants, we first must identify their Perfect Customer.
We start by identifying a man and woman. They consider their best customers and try to get them to the restaurant.
We then begin to mold our advertising campaign around these two customers. By doing this, we create a strong foundation for our digital marketing strategy.
Once we identify the perfect customer, we next identify their Top 5 Topics (T5T).
Identify your T5T
We sit down with the restaurant and ask them several questions regarding their business, which will help us identify their restaurant’s identity.
From this, we establish 5 topics that will be our focus for social media content.
The Reliable foundation’s core purpose is to create consistency and quality content to increase customer loyalty.
So, after we have identified the T5T, we begin to schedule content for their social media.
By creating this consistency, we will increase the number of posts, but followers will begin to know the restaurant’s identity.
We make sure to touch each of the T5T’s at least 3 times a week.
From the various social media audits that we have conducted, we have noticed that the average amount of posting for restaurants is close to 13-15 posts a month.
By identifying your T5T and establishing an automated posting schedule, we will automatically have you posting at least 15 times a week.
A newsletter is simply an email that you send to an email list that can be used to sell products or give information.
Are you probably thinking of email? In 2020?
Email marketing is, by far, the best marketing strategy that your restaurant can have.
Think about it, what do you need to open a social media account? An email.
Everybody has an email, so why not use it to your advantage?
We start by creating an account in Mailchimp for the restaurant and complete a form and landing page.
By using the T5T, we start an aggressive social media campaign directing followers to sign up for the newsletter in exchange for a discount or promotional item.
When implementing a newsletter in the reliable foundation, you establish the groundwork for owning your traffic, which is the core concept of Online.
A newsletter is a direct channel to your customers. You may think, ok, but I have over 30k followers on Instagram. Isn’t that pretty direct?
And yes, having a successful social media account is direct and useful, but not as much as having a 10k email list.
This means that if you create an email campaign with 10k subscribers selling a new product, over 1% will click and visit your link to see the product.
Now imagine sending out an email twice a week with your weekly lunch specials to over 10k customers. Or every day with your daily lunch specials.
Remember that until now, yes, you have 30k Instagram followers, but how many of them actually see a post when you would like them to.
With a newsletter, you increase the chances that your customers will receive your promotion and action.
If you are offering a lunch special, how many of them actually see the post before lunchtime?
This leads us to another concept of Reliable, social media analytics.
It is essential to know what your followers’ tendencies are.
How many are women? How many are men? At what time are they online, and which of your T5T receives more interaction.
Analytics can identify all of this information for you.
We use various social media analytics tools to ensure that your information reaches your perfect customer at the right time.
Combined with T5T, your analytics data will mold the content of your posting.
These are only a few examples of how we apply the Reliable fundamental in the G.R.O.W. framework.
As you can imagine, each restaurant has different needs. Still, with G.R.O.W., we create a digital marketing roadmap to a successful online business.
Once we create consistency in your online information with Gain and create a robust and loyal following with Reliable, we begin to direct your traffic to your personal online home.
The Online fundamental is where you begin to gain your online independence and break away from social media.
You stop seeing social media as your primary digital marketing source and see it only as a tool to direct your followers to your personal website.
A website creates a home base where you own your traffic and stop depending on social media to scavage your restaurant’s income.
We established a newsletter campaign to increase your customer loyalty in a Reliable foundation, creating your email list.
In the Online fundamental, we take this momentum and turn it up a notch by increasing your restaurant’s value with a website.
And you may think, “Oh no, more work.”
But don’t worry, once you have your website running, your newsletter will take care of most of the activities.
Your website is simply space where you can showcase your restaurant’s identity and your T5T attributes. Also, Remember that your marketing strategy has to be targeting your perfect customer at all times.
These are your best and most income generating customers.
With a blend of your T5T and your newsletter, we have tried to create value for your restaurant. We have given an identity to your business and targeted the customers that you would like to have.
With a website, you can solidify your restaurant brand and image and offer things that no social media platform can offer. Answer all of the questions in the customer’s mind. A website will increase your services’ value and thicken the bond to create Reliability with your customer.
A website should be a direct extension of your business. After all, it’s yours. It is a property that you have invested in and are maintaining like a house. And you want your visitors to gain all of the value possible and leave happy so that they return.
Most people fear this step because they think it's expensive and complicating.
They are not too computer savvy and do not feel comfortable with adding something else to their day. And yes. This step can be an additional task to your busy schedule, but it is worth the payoff.
In Gain and Reliable, we discussed how you could save time and create consistency with social media automation.
But little do people know that owning a website is the easiest way to automate your advertising. And the most effective advertising that you could have for your reliable customers and potential clients.
create your Homebase
You need to create a base of operations online for your customers. A place where they can get anything and everything about your restaurant: get your menu, make reservations, order online, get news updates.
Social media should be a tool to get people to your website. That’s it. And now, moving forward, all of your efforts on social media should be to direct customers to your website.
You have finally cut the social media umbilical cord. You are now almost free from relying on platforms that you have no control over.
now that you have your follower’s attention, you open your online ordering service. This will give your customers even more value to your brand and give you a spike in your income.
In the next fundamental, Wealth, I will detail the benefits of the online order and how it can double your revenue. But here, I want to discuss the importance of including an online ordering service on your website.
I said earlier that a website should be a direct extension of your restaurant. This theory means that if you sell your product at your restaurant, why not sell it online? Give the customer the option to order and pay online to pick up at your store.
Streamlining the ordering process online gives you a significant advantage over your competitors, who struggle to juggle walk-ins and phone calls all day.
Investing in online ordering is the best way to take control of your delivery service. Not only will it provide value to your customers by giving them options to order from you. But you will also have more control of the service from the point the food leaves your location to the delivery point.
Your online ordering service can give the customer value that you cannot imagine combined with a newsletter. Give your customers options to order from you. Show them that you care enough to provide them with an easy way to conduct business with you.
The final step to the online fundamentals is SEO.
So what is SEO?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.
In Gain, we discussed the importance of local SEO and the impact that it can have on your restaurant. By optimizing Google my Business, you can increase the chances of appearing in the Google Three Pack for local searches.
SEO for your website is similar, but it is used to direct online traffic to your website on any search engine.
In the next chapter, I will discuss how you can advertise your website online by investing in paid ads. SEO is the complete opposite. SEO is what is called organic advertising.
SEO is the art of increasing your site’s visibility in search engines, which in turn sends more traffic to your site. In short, An optimized site will increase the chances that your page will appear higher in search results in engines like Google or Bing.
The final step of the Online Fundamental is SEO because you need to have everything else in place first before applying it. All of the descriptions and wording used in the site need to be relevant to the keywords you will use. Even the images you use on your website need to have a description associated with the keywords.
Once you fully optimize your website with the correct keywords and related information, your site will gain more google visibility. This will help you gain more followers.
SEO is the most powerful tool in your arsenal, but it can only be applied when everything else is in place.
By the time we have implemented the Online fundamentals, you should be seeing the impact of the G.R.O.W. framework.
In Gain, we have created consistency in your online information to avoid causing confusion for your customers.
With Reliable, we have established your perfect customers and implemented your T5T, which will create a robust social media content strategy. Also, combined with a newsletter, we have increased the loyalty of your customer base.
By implementing Online, we have created a home for your restaurant online. A place that will help you own your traffic and gain independence from social media.
With the Wealth foundation, we teach you how to increase your online ordering sales and the importance of paid traffic.
Wealth means to take everything that we have discussed in G.R.O. and take it to the next level.
The ways of billboards and newspaper ads are gone forever. Media is now consumed digitally and in your pocket. Advertising digitally has overtaken the print marketing industry by storm. And it does not intend to look back.
G.R.O.W. is a program to take your digital business and make it profitable. The most efficient way to do this is to invest in online advertising.
Yes, you may have luck by running your business off Instagram. And I mentioned earlier that SEO could bring you a ton of traffic if you apply it correctly to your website. But investing in a website and buying ads will gain you much value for your money.
This fundamental is about taking everything that we have built on Gain, Reliable, and Online, and boosting the income to your restaurant.
I will discuss how you can use google ads and Facebook ads to drive traffic to your site. But first, I want to go back to how you can make money by integrating an online ordering system into your website.
Online ordering for the win
If you own a restaurant, I am sure that you offer online ordering through one of the popular services. And you should. These platforms are full of users that are always looking for something different to eat. I am one of them.
I have spoken to various restaurant owners, and they all say the same thing. They see these services more of a marketing tactic than an essential sales tool. The low-profit margin focuses more on quantity and utilizes delivery platforms to grow their restaurant’s visibility.
Not having an online ordering service is a mistake that I see many restaurants making right now. You have come such a long way from building your social media platforms just how you want it.
Growing your reach in google and creating a loyal and reliable base. Are you willing to start giving away money?
The money that they have given to the online ordering applications could have paid for an excellent online ordering service on their website. And had some leftover to but ads for targeting their customers.
I’m sure you are thinking, but how much will it cost me to create an online ordering service? Online ordering service on your website is free. They may charge you for extra services, but the base service is free. Of course, you need a website to install it.
But this means that you do not have to pay a percentage of the sales to anyone. Everything is profit to your pocket.
Of course, you do not have the delivery and reach that Uber eats has. When you get started, you can offer to take out. But I suggest that you look into a flat rate delivery service. These are services that charge you delivery fees based on the distance.
You can also find delivery services that you can pay a flat fee for a day, and they will be on standby. The best part about this is that you can bill the customer what you wish for the delivery.
By eliminating the high transaction fee from these services, you can play with the prices a bit more. Lower your costs to give the visitors an incentive to buy from you. Place unique products not offered on other services. Give discounts and promotions from your shop.
Incorporating your Online ordering service will create a loyal base that will continue to order from you and visit your location. And not only that but increase the revenue for your restaurant.
Now you have a website, and you are using the newsletter and social media content to drive traffic, but you feel that it is not moving as fast as you wish.
The most profitable way to drive traffic is by paying for it.
Facebook ads are the best option to increase awareness and reach to social media audiences.
Google ads are the best form of online advertising on the internet. Period.
Have you ever visited a website to buy clothes, and an ad for that website is following you around every site you visit?
These ads can appear on sites that have absolutely nothing to do with clothes or anything related. Like a news site or a travel site.
This force is the power of Google ads. Apart from the massive reach that Google has, you can target your ads to reach a specific customer.
In the last chapter, we discussed SEO and how important it is to implement your website to increase organic traffic.
Paid ads take this to the next level.
When you search on Google, you get two results. At the top of the page, you see results that have the word Ad next to it. These are called paid results. Following that, you will find the products that come from having good SEO on your site.
When creating search ads in the google ads platform, you have the option to customize up to 15 different descriptions. This means you can customize the visitor results according to a variety of keyword phrases.
For the final step of Wealth, we install Adsense to the website.
Adsense is a way to monetize your website by letting google use space on your site to include Google Ads. So it short, when you buy google ads, you are paying for Adsense. Adsense provides real estate on the internet to display the ads in which you have invested.
Have you have been to websites full of advertisements and click here blocks and banners? These are sites with various types of advertising platforms that, believe it or not, generating tons of money for them.
This blog post is full of Google Adsense ads. each time an ad is clicked, I get a small commission.
Now I am not saying that we will fill up your brand new and beautify website with ads to make it look like Times Square. But by placing Adsense strategically on your site, it can generate an additional income for your business.
Adsense is a Google service that places ads that match your site’s content with what visitors are looking for with display ads. As a website owner, you only need to place code from google into your site’s spaces that you would like to have ads. This way, you can keep the integrity of your site without bombarding your visitors with ads.
To get an idea of the type of revenue you can generate, Google has created an AdSense calculator. According to the calculator, if your food-themed website generates 50k visitors per month, you will earn an estimated $5,010 per year.
It is an impressive number. And this is where the numbers come into play. Suppose you are investing in google ads for visitors to your website. In that case, you include a few Adsense spaces, and you can start to recuperate some of the investment from the ads. I call this the Google Loop.
Adsense pays you by C.P.C. Each time a user clicks an ad on your site, you will get a monetary reward from google. The more visitors means that you will gain more clicks and income. So if you buy ads to your site and click on your Adsense, you start to narrow the expense.
But placing ads on your homepage and other areas of your site is just one way to monetize your site. At island dwellers, I always recommend that restaurants start a blog.
You only have to post once a week about anything having to do with their restaurant. It can be anything having to do with the business. As long as it stays on point with the rest of the site, Google will start to send you visitors.
In the blog section, you can go crazy with the ads. You can sell banner and areas of your blog to advertisers and start to monetize your site little by little.
Look at your website to generate money instead of an information hub. You can generate good revenue on the side.
Now we will pull the Wealth fundamentals together.
When we apply to pull on our customer’s accounts, we always wait until they have Gained their customer base from social media and google. Their website is receiving organic visits from Google, and the website has the potential and content to apply Wealth.
Online ordering is only the first part of acquiring Wealth on your website. It is your ticket to freedom and an opportunity to be dependant online. And we like to start with online ordering so that the customer can begin to get used to receiving that additional traffic and make adjustments so that the level of customer service does not suffer.
Once you integrate Google and Facebook ads to your marketing campaign, your traffic will go through the roof.
You have to make sure that your customer service and capacity in your business is ready for it so that your level of service does not suffer.
And that is the G.R.O.W. Framework
This is only a rough outline of what the G.R.O.W. framework is.
For this article, we only wanted to provide an overview of the general concept of G.R.O.W.
Within these fundamentals, there are countless ways to optimize your restaurant. Of course, I did not want this blog post to turn into a book, but I wanted for you to get the core idea of G.R.O.W.
I hope you enjoyed this post, and if you have any comments, let me know below.
Also, If you are interested in applying G.R.O.W. to your restaurant, signup up for our free social media audit to get started.
We will analyze your current situation and give you the opportunities that you have with G.R.O.W.