What was the last food you ordered for delivery? If it’s pizza, high five — we’re already going to be best friends. Food delivery services have changed eating habits across the world. Advances in mobile apps quickly turned the table not just for pizza chains, but for most restaurants. Waiting for a table or leaving early to make sure you’d find parking became less of a concern when food delivery startups started making their mark. If you are a food delivery startup and you are running out of epic marketing campaigns to increase your customer base, here are a few that you can consider trying out.
- Leverage. Social. Media!: There are several self-proclaimed food critics and some genuine ones; they all use food specific hashtags to make their voices heard. Instagram happens to be where you can get the attention of millennials and get the ear of the foodies. Using hashtags like #foodporn #foodism #andnameoffooditem can get you discovered for a start. But it shouldn’t stop there. Run campaigns where you are asking customers to tag your page for the food they ordered to win a coupon or a free meal. It’s important that you run campaigns where food is discussed (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat). Let your customers know your presence in these social media platforms. Give them a reason to follow your account; it could be to get deals from your promotional campaigns, share food delivery stories or to look at delicious food concoctions. Acknowledge your followers when they are tagging or commenting on your posts. The more customized your responses are, the more attention you’ll get from your customers.
- Show off Staff: Just like the food, your staff is also equally important. Share inspiring, positive stories of the chef and your supporting staff. Make a video highlighting which dishes your chef likes to eat and what their favorite menu item is. There are multiple stories you can cover with just food and your staff — take advantage of this! Share stories through videos, blogs or podcasts on social media and newsletters. This will make the customer experience more personalized.
- Start a Blog: This is vital to getting discovered across search engines. Blogs make stories more personal. Share links to your social feeds and the images taken by customers, for other customers. Allow guest bloggers to share their reviews or stories of the food. Run campaigns across your target audience to share recipes. The blogs should, of course, center around food. You can add whatever spices you need to make it more flavored. 🙂
- Make Your Menu Accessible: Your menu should be everywhere. On social feeds, on your website, on your app. Share your menu across platforms to engrave it into your customer’s brains. Apart from the quality of food, they have to remember your name when they think of that specific food item in your menu, so creative options can help you stand out. (Pizookie, anyone?)
- Be Generous with Offers, Coupons, and Loyalty Programs: We know this will probably be a shocker, but people like deals. If you onboard them with a coupon or an offer, you’ll be more likely to retain them as a customer. For that, you have to introduce loyalty points. There several ways to run this sort of offer — many airlines do this particularly well. Get inspired and speak the foodie language. If customers refer another customer, how about a free dessert? If customers refer more than 10 customers, how about a meal on-the-house? Run season-specific campaigns and coupons. Tweak your campaigns every quarter. Also, most importantly, don’t run campaigns and offers across the year. Create exclusivity to keep your customers look out for these offers.
- Monitor Reviews: This is key. It’s important to hear your customer’s feedback. Be it in person, email, phone, or online reviews. Create a profile on review platforms like Yelp and Zomato. Ensure that you respond personally to any escalations. Even if the reviews are bad, accept it (as long as the review is a genuine one) and respond appropriately so that no one gets offended. Try to reach a conclusion and let the world know that you are listening to what your customers have to say. There can be multiple areas of customer feedback, from the container you used as your delivery box to the behavior of the food delivery person. Potential customers often care more about how you respond to that feedback than the feedback in and of itself.
- Invite Local Influencers: Like any other industry, if you get influencers to talk about your food and service on social media or your blog (or even their blog), you are creating a wider opportunity to get discovered by more people. Give these influencers goodies and other offers to bring them back. Take pictures or videos and print out reviews so you can get them signed and put them on the wall. If they are widely popular, invite customers to do an AMA and live video interactions.
- Get Involved!: Every city will have campaigns and activities which get the attention of all foodies. There are food festivals and marathons across most cities. Take this opportunity to feed the homeless and the needy. I remember a food critic @neenu_foodkissed in UAE running a campaign on Instagram called #feedastranger. This got picked up by several other foodies across the globe to feed a stranger. Get inspired by these philanthropic activities and see what comes of your participation. One of my favorite campaigns in this space is from Suspended Coffee.
- Let the Food Talk: This is your only real goal. Don’t let anything else bother you. You’ve got to serve the best food in the planet. T H E B E S T. Even if your service is ridiculously bad, you bet people will come for you if you serve the best food. People can’t live without food and they will do anything to have the best.
Foodies travel across continents to try a particular dish. Even if you’re in outer space, you can get your pizza delivered. If logistics is not your forte, hire a food delivery specialist to take care of that part. This will give you more time to ensure that the food you deliver is top quality and that you focus on running campaigns to get more orders. Running campaigns is always secondary to the quality of food you deliver. The food you serve will speak for itself. Do share your story about the food you serve; we would love to order it or come in person to grab a bite. Good luck!
If you are looking for an expert to talk your food language, look no further.