Chelsea, AL, July 17, 2012 --(PR.com
)-- Howard Cannon, CEO of Restaurant Consultants of America spends a lot of time coaching new restaurant owners and wanna-be restaurant owners. One way he does this is through his books and frequently published articles. Having spent his entire career in the restaurant and hospitality industry, he is dedicated to helping restaurant owners achieve success, and marketing is a big part of the formula for success in the restaurant business.
“Eat Here!” blinking in neon atop a roadside diner is certainly marketing, and so is Ronald McDonald. From a blinking neon sign, to a clown, to a rock n’ roll jingle, to a 2-for-1 coupon, to passing out business cards.
The successful competition definitely knows how to market itself. McDonald’s spends more in marketing dollars than most restaurant chains receive in sales. All the big chains spend many, many millions of dollars in marketing per month. Can the average restaurant owner compete with that? Locally, in one's own neighborhood, it is possible. One only needs to understand how to make marketing work in order to be seen and heard amidst all these marketing Goliaths. If nobody knows about the restaurant, chances are there won’t be very many customers.
Mr. Cannon says, "Be memorable. McDonald’s and other restaurants aren’t giving away even one sale without some advertisement to argue the customer away from you. A ton of competition is reaching the consumer with a message a minute. To stand out from the crowd, you need to be different, unique, strange, funny, noticeable, bright, crazy, and more, if necessary. But mostly, be memorable. Ideas are great, dreams are wonderful, and reality is reality. Imagine... then dream; and then, see the Super Bowl. Last I heard, the average 30-second Super Bowl commercial cost $2.2 million. I’m only guessing, but I’m betting you aren’t made of money. So a couple of spots on the Super Bowl may not be the most realistic marketing idea you will develop. But you will need to market your restaurant, and you will need to spend money.”
The most powerful form of advertising for any business happens to be word of mouth advertising. If your place provides a great dining experience for your customers, the word will get out. Keep messages short, clear, and to the point. Say what you have to say, in a memorable way, and move on. The average consumer sees, literally, thousands of marketing messages and logos during any given day.
Marketing is both a science and an art and becoming an expert at this game takes time, money, and effort. You may want to stay on your toes, because just when you think you have it figured out, something in the marketing game changes.
Howard Cannon is a highly-recognized restaurant expert witness, consultant, analyst, and speaker. He is the author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Starting a Restaurant© - found in 76 countries around the globe. Mr. Cannon is the CEO of Restaurant Consultants of America and Restaurant Expert Witness, and can be reached at 800-300-5764 or via the web at RestaurantConsultantsOfAmerica.com or RestaurantExpertWitness.com.