17 November, 2017

Mark McCulloch: Which channels do you think people should be investing their time in over the next year?

No one has a crystal ball so we are staying open minded, but we are focusing on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. There is no '1 channel' that you should go all in on. It is a mix of channels that are right for you and your business, but need to get this mix right.

Instagram to build the beauty of your brand, Twitter for 121 relationship building and listening 95% of the time - you will get great feedback and potential sales from setting your listening searches to your brand, product, local area etc. With the local areas searches you will see people saying "Anyone know a good pasta place in Reigate?" If you operate there and have good pasta then you can convert them to a sale. Facebook is mainly being used now for targeted advertising. Organic is not dead at all, but it is getting harder and harder to get the reach you need without putting money behind it.

Snapchat is not to be ignored, but marketers and brands have found it super tricky to make it work well for them in the main. It is still very much alive and should be used if it is the right platform for you. But, you need to do more than be salesy and just show you product on there 24/7. WhatsApp is an amazing tool and is one to watch. Advertising on there is happening, plus it is getting used as a VIP channel for brands most loyal customers to get offers and news first, plus brands like Small Batch Coffee are using it as a pre order channel for their customers to click and collect.

And then there’s the rest. If you have beautiful, unique interiors, Pinterest would be really valuable to you for people to lust after your brand and experience. LinkedIn (basically Facebook with a suit) is so powerful now in terms of targeting business people and workers to drive them into your restaurant. It can really help support your other social activity to close the loop for your customers/potential customer seeing you everywhere.

YouTube is also a great social platform for hosting your evergreen content and it is the second largest search engine after all, yet 99% of us ignore it and don't leverage the power it has. Searches are going on every second of every day for 'How to make the perfect steak, burger, espresso martini, latte, ramen' etc etc etc. You have a chance to be the go-to brand for trusted food and drink advice. But it takes planning, hard work and budget as it has to look great.

There are other social channels (or we would class them as this) too that need tending to such as Trip Advisor, Google Reviews, Feefo etc etc. This is vital to your success are more and more people are driven by these reviews and you will have lost a sale, before the customer has even set foot in your restaurant.


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