Business and Operations
Making Dough with Diane: January-February 2016
7 ways to advertise your new pizzeria
By Diane Chiasson
With the very challenging economy and increased competition among restaurants, it is more important than ever to get your new pizzeria or new location noticed.
While it may seem like a difficult task, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to promote your business. It just takes a bit of patience and creativity to get you going. Here are some budget-friendly tips to help you get started:
1. Design your website
Develop a professional-looking website. The best way to promote your pizzeria is to show high-quality, delicious-looking pictures of your pizzas, not only on your website but also across various social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest and other online resources. Include images of gooey melted cheese, fresh Roma tomatoes with basil pesto sauce, fancier pizzas with variations of toppings, and golden crust. Include photos of your restaurant’s interior and exterior to give your customers a sense of the style, décor and ambiance. Don’t forget to provide easy directions and a map to your pizza place.
2. Come up with a slogan
Depending of the style of the restaurant you will operate – a family-style sit-down restaurant, a casual grab-and-go pizza or an upscale Italian eatery – create a slogan around your unique style. Use a simple slogan that’s easy to remember, but make sure it describes in simple terms the characteristics your pizzeria wishes to convey.
3. Create an email newsletter
Determine the best frequency of your newsletter. Send out a monthly email newsletter. It doesn’t have to be a weekly affair: you just need to communicate regularly and consistently. Newsletters are an effective way to get all kinds of information about your restaurant into the hands of your customers and potential customers. Use your newsletter to show off your new menu items and signature dishes or to share special club membership or discounts or to simply talk about your wonderful staff. Add colourful photographs of your dishes – use pictures that will make people salivate and get them in the door. Share photos of your chefs, events, servers or specials of the week. For branding purposes, always use your restaurant’s logo and colours, and make sure that your newsletter’s layout is esthetically pleasing. Consider creating a “teaser offer” to encourage people to visit your restaurant. Ask them to bring in the newsletter itself to redeem the offer. I suggest a free cocktail or dessert rather than discounting your pizza.
4. Start a blog
Starting your own blog is a very effective way to advertise your restaurant, to get noticed and to stay on budget. It is also a great way to build community and engage with your customers. Share everything about your new pizzeria – images of food, recipes, new menu items, daily specials, unusual toppings, crazy and funny stories, upcoming events, your successes and struggles, and anything else that might interest your customers.
5. Hand out fridge magnets
Your business card may get lost or thrown away, but magnets will find themselves stuck on the refrigerator. Custom-printed magnets make intriguing promotional tools by bringing awareness to your brand and are handy, at-a-glance informational tools. Every time someone opens the refrigerator door to find it empty or the contents unappealing, your branded magnet will give them an instant reminder of your pizzeria and an easily accessed telephone number.
6. Use colourful flyers
Pizzerias have competition everywhere and using flyers is a great form of advertising as well as a great way to promote your operation. You can announce special promotions and events, deals, new toppings, and promote your seasonal menu. Try to design an eye-catching flyer, and keep in mind that the most efficient way to make your flyers stand out is to make them attractive, colourful and interesting.
Another important reason to create and hand out flyers is for brand awareness: if you are not consistently reminding your customers that you are actively doing business, they will forget about you and your restaurant and go somewhere else. Pass out flyers to houses in your community, nearby office buildings.
7. Target the kids
Have you ever seen a kid who didn’t like pizza? Nine times out of 10, you will definitely hear “PIZZA PLEASE!” Bring the kids in by developing a fun kids’ pizza menu and offer some interesting games, colourful balloons or unique activities.
Diane Chiasson, FCSI, president of Chiasson Consultants Inc., has been helping foodservice, hospitality and retail operators increase sales for over 25 years by providing innovative and revenue-increasing foodservice and retail merchandising programs, interior design, branding, menu engineering, marketing and promotional campaigns, and much more. Contact her at 416-926-1338, toll-free at 1-888-926-6655 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.chiassonconsultants.com.