A CRM system is a new technology used to perform an old old function. In the past, you had to actually remember what your customers purchased. This was difficult, especially if they did not come in regularly. This made advertising difficult because you could never be sure of who you were advertising to. Traditional advertising methods like newspaper ads are expensive, and it’s difficult to monitor their actual benefit. Printed coupons offer similar risks and are not a long term solution for attracting new customers. Offering coupons frequently will eventually take away from your profits as well, as customers may come in only if they have a coupon. Paper coupons also don’t allow you to collect email addresses or other important information about your customers. The CRM system does all of this for you. A restaurant CRM system can offer many benefits, including organizing customer information so that you can personalize service and marketing.
Customer relationship management has changed
Customer relationship management (CRM) systems have changed and improved significantly in recent years. You may still have to enter some email addresses manually, but you no longer have to worry about entering duplicates. Before, a customer database would usually be stored in an excel file, which would be manually updated. Now you can have signup sheets to collect customer information on your website, on a tablet in your restaurant, or linked to a QR code at the foot of the bill (which the customer can then scan with their own mobile device).
Let’s look at ways you can attract new customers and collect email addresses to add to your CRM system.
Run marketing campaigns and attract new customers
You want to attract new customers. Create a marketing campaign attracting customers to your restaurant to redeem an offer. This can be advertised on your social media pages and website, or outside of your restaurant with digital signage. Let’s say you own a café.Try something like Free Coffee Fridays, where you can offer a coffee for 50 cents, and then if the customer refers a friend, they receive free coffee. When the customer comes in to redeem the offer, you can ask them for their email. If you have a signup form on your website or social media page, you can ask people to sign up for your newsletter for special offers from your restaurant (but then you should keep your word and really provide those special offers!).
Use promotion analytics
Analyze which marketing campaigns work best for your restaurant. Say you’ve tried a few different promotional campaigns like offering a free drink with meal purchase or a free dessert. It will become clear which campaign drew in more new customers. Or perhaps neither worked and in this case you can try something new.
Find your market
Based on sales records, you can most likely figure out which dish or dishes are your most popular. Attract new customers by offering a discount on your most popular dish. Consider your clientele. Perhaps you’ve noticed that many of your customers have children. You can offer a ‘kids eat free’ promotion to new customers for a limited time.
Try a refer-a-friend promotion
This promotes customer loyalty and is useful for attracting new customers. Members of your customer loyalty program can be given coupons to share with their friends. Those coupons contain unique codes that link back to your loyal customers’ accounts. The details of the promotion are up to you!
The restaurant industry is competitive, both on-line and in the real world. A good CRM system means more loyal customers and the growth of your restaurant, and you should start using it to attract more new customers!