Whether you like it or not, your restaurant has a brand. What that brand is is completely up to you. While many restaurants think their food speaks for itself, the reality is that your brand is something that you control and your food is just a part of it. So, besides creating amazing food, what else can you do to build your brand?
Write Out Your Mission Statement
Your mission statement is a detailed expression of what your restaurant stands behind. It’s the why behind your restaurant.
By writing out your mission statement, sharing it with your team, and keeping it in a place that is visible to everyone you’re showing your commitment to everything you believe in.
Here are some questions to ask yourself when writing out your mission statement:
- Why did you open your restaurant?
- Who is your restaurant?
- What are your goals?
- How will you accomplish these goals?
Your answers to these questions will give you the framework for your mission statement.
Determine Your Market Positioning
Your position in the market plays a part in your brand. This helps to differentiate you from competitors and understand what your unique selling point is. Your food will set you apart, but so will how much food you offer for your price, how you promote your food, and more.
Determine your market positioning by replacing the following bullet points with where you stand on them:
While dining in at restaurants is something that isn’t as popular right now, we know that over time, people will start coming back. And, even if a person isn’t dining in, the ambiance of your restaurant will speak volumes to someone coming in to pick up a take out order.
Your ambiance is the combination of decor, music, and even mannerisms from your staff that come together to build your brand.
What do you want your restaurant to communicate to customers?
Develop Your Brand Identity
Your brand identity will follow you throughout your website’s design, your online ordering portal, and even your paper menus. It’s made of colors and images that jog people’s memories and evoke happy feelings when they see things that relate to them.
It’s important that you work with a skilled graphic designer when working on your brand identity. They will help you choose the best colors for your brand and make your logo come to life.
Brand identity includes:
Pro tip: make sure your online ordering portal matches your brand identity.
The first place people are likely to be exposed to your brand is your website. It’s the first impression people will get of your restaurant. And, as grandma says, “your first impression is the last impression.”
Your website should reflect what your restaurant’s personality is. Additionally, you’ll want to make sure your online ordering site matches the branding of your website. At eHungry, we can help you do this with our free design service. And, if you are comfortable with working on design yourself, you can go in and add custom CSS (we only recommend that if you’re a pro).
Your team is the keeper of your brand. That means that the better trained they are to understand what you want to communicate to guests, the more solid your branding will be. Ensure they understand the unique phrases you embrace, how you describe menu options, and the environment you are eager to promote.
As your team is trained to understand your brand, they will act as your ambassadors and representatives while they interact with your guests.
Social Media Networks
Social media is an absolute must for restaurants. It’s not just an important part of getting your name out there, but also a great way to engage with people who love you, curate reviews, and get indexed by search engines.
The images you post on social media, as well the language you use, how often you post, and other content posted will all speak to your brand and communicate that to your audience.
When working on your social media presence, ensure the following honor your brand:
- Use your logo for your profile photo
- Choose cover photos or a cover video that highlights your restaurant
- Consider offering a virtual tour
- Make your menu accessible