05.23.2014

SM3 Top Three: How to Get More Reviews for Your Restaurant Part I

Part I: What You Can Do In-Store
DolphinMain

In today’s world of social media communications, a key challenge for restaurants is to motivate guests to write positive reviews of your establishment. The more happy customers writing reviews, the more a restaurant can boost its presence on major sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor.  It’s difficult to believe, but the most effective strategy is to simply ask for them.  Fishbowl’s SM3 team has worked with a lot of clients on this challenge and suggests a multi-channel approach, especially when your restaurant is new to the neighborhood. Essentially, you must use all of your resources – your social media presences, your eClub, and even your store itself. We’ve gathered tips from the SM3 team on how to do all of these things.

First up, your in-store options. Fishbowl’s Katelyn Dolphin knows from her experience with many restaurant clients that pairing a strong online presence with in-store promotional materials will strengthen the impact of the message. Here are a few ways she inspires guests to think about their Yelp reviews before they even finish their meals:

  1. Use a table tent. Use your restaurant’s “real estate” – tables or the bar –to advertise your presence on the major online review sites. Katelyn likes to use a QR code that links smartphone users to the restaurant’s Yelp or Trip Advisor profile.
  2. Train your staff. Whether it’s a burger joint or a five star dining experience, the staff is the key to making any restaurant experience great. Encourage the team to ask guests for feedback when they present the check.
  3. Menu mention. Besides the table and the staff, what is one other touch point all restaurants have? A menu, of course! Take the table tent QR code and add it to the bottom of the paper menu, asking guests to provide feedback on their favorite items. If you’d prefer a more subtle approach, add a simple sentence request on the last page.

It’s important to remember that in-store is but just one way to reach out to guests. Our next post in this series will cover online methods, using your social media pages. An offline/online tag team brings more power to the message than the in-store option on its own!

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