SMS Marketing for Restaurants - Benefits | Practices | Ideas - Bring Customers With Money

SMS Marketing for Restaurants - Benefits | Practices | Ideas - Bring Customers With Money

Muhammad Abdullah

What if I said you could get massive amounts of loyal customers every day without spending a lot of money or time doing it? And what if I said that you could do this all with a relatively new marketing technique called SMS marketing for restaurants? Keep reading to learn about how SMS marketing works and why you should try it if your small business is in this market segment.

Is SMS Marketing Dead in 2021?

The report entitled “US Consumers to Get More and Better Texting in 2021” found that US consumers will send and receive over 10 trillion texts in 2021. According to the study, that number is 1,000 times more text messages than there were sent in 2010.

SMS Marketing is one of the easiest and Unique Restaurant Promotion Ideas a restaurant can use today. Research has shown that customers who engage in SMS marketing feel they get more value for the price of products than customers that do not. Here’s why you should be using SMS marketing to market your restaurant.

6 Unimaginable Benefits of SMS Marketing For Restaurants

1. Affordable Way For Everyone

SMS marketing is the best solution for brands that have just started their business or need help with direct response marketing. The main reason for this is that SMS campaigns are very cheap and have a high delivery rate.

2. Access More People

When you have an effective SMS marketing strategy, you’re reaching anyone with a cell phone, anywhere in the world.
Many traditional marketing platforms (except guerrilla marketing) and other modern only allow you to reach people with internet access. These will have minimal reach to the majority of the population.

However, an SMS can be received regardless of the device you are using, whether it has internet access or not. This vast number of potential customers is exactly what makes an SMS a powerful marketing tool.

3. SMS has a 98% Open Rates

There’s no better time than now to get started with SMS marketing for restaurants. It’s a highly effective and affordable way to generate more business for any business. In fact, SMS text messaging marketing has a 98% open rate compared to emails that have an average of 20% or less.

Just for giving your customer information and a discount code, they might be ready to place an order in the next few minutes. This is why it’s so important that they have your contact information when making a purchase decision.

4. It Increases Customer Loyalty

Encourage your mobile customers to visit your store by sending special deals exclusively for them. A visit to your newly enriched mobile site will convert better. Users will not necessarily click on the link to open your website; however, all their attention will focus on the SMS they have received.

5. Versatile Marketing Way To Grab a Customer

SMS marketing is one of the most versatile tools you have at your disposal. From a longstanding, proven method of customer support to splashy new marketing opportunities, the text is both an outstanding channel and a great way to keep your finger on the pulse of your audience.

So, when devising a text marketing strategy, pick and choose what you want to communicate: an exclusive menu item, a discount, a promo code, or even news about your restaurant.

6. Get Better ROI

Papa John's, the pizza delivery franchise, is known for its superior quality and reasonably priced pizzas. One of their marketing strategies is to send enticing half-price deals with witty texts to their customers' mobiles. It has worked well, and Papa John received a return of over $14 after spending $1 on an SMS campaign. This is a great SMS marketing way for restaurants of combining an exclusive, limited-time deal with a valuable follow-up offer.

5 Sure-Fire SMS Marketing Best Practices In The Restaurant Industry

1. Speak When You Have Something Unique To Offer

SMS requires the consumer’s attention. Therefore, we recommend only using it for communications that are more “urgent,” such as when you’re letting users know that something “hot” is going on right now. This way, you can make sure that your customers won’t be caught by surprise by an SMS – after all, no one wants a text from their bank at 8 am on a Saturday telling them about an interest rate change! So, say when you have something very unique to offer.

2. Take Permission From Your Customers First

The final question to ask yourself before sending a text message is whether your customer has opted-in to receive them. You should already have that information, but you need to go back to your email and ask the customer for consent if you don't. It's not OK just to assume they agreed. This will give you more flexibility in the future when your customer's interests evolve.

3. Short Messages Bring Customers

If you’re designing an SMS marketing campaign for your restaurant, remember that you are limited to 160 characters per SMS with most providers. Even if most new phones can support a longer message, customers are looking to receive a quick snapshot of what your brand is up to, not a novel. Keep it short and concise, and your messages will convert readers into customers.

4. Customized Messages

Besides sending automated bulk messages to customers, one of the tricks marketers have used for ages is to add a personal touch or ‘segmentation’ to improve the experience. It’s a simple trick that can go a long way for your restaurant to making an ordinary customer feel special.

5. Provide Opt-Out Option

Many consumers are unaware of the different kinds of text messages they can receive. By providing an easy opportunity for them to opt-out, they can prevent other texts while feeling in control.

Read: Restaurant Instagram Marketing

SMS Marketing for Restaurants: 10 Effective Ideas

Now, let’s look at some amazing SMS Restaurant Marketing Ideas And Trends that actually convert users into customers for restaurants.

1. Send Out Discount Codes

You might be surprised, but discounts play a vital role when it comes to restaurant texting systems. Many people don’t want to go into a restaurant unless they know that they’re getting a discount.
Short text messages with discount codes go a long way. Since they are easy to consume and understand, you can expect a positive response from your customers.

2.Say Happy Birthday With a Special Treat

Birthday treats make customers feel special. You can send unique messages through text so that they remember how their birthday was once. It's a good way to make you unique and stand out from your competitors.

3. Second Order Brings Repeat Customers

How do you turn first-time customers into repeat customers? A great way is to remind them of something that may be running out or could change. It’s not going to be easy to get people to come back if they got what they wanted from you the first time around, so it’s important to use strategies that make them really want to return.

4. Prevent Cart Abandonment

SMS marketing for restaurants can be used as an effective tool to counter cart abandonment. Research has indicated that 64% of consumers have abandoned their carts due to poor shipping times. While many factors contributed to this outcome, a staggering 66% of customers say they would complete their order if they were reminded with a text message. Make them remember to complete their left order.

5. Re-engage Customers Who Haven’t Ordered In a While

Re-engagement is one of the top growth levers for restaurants. For this reason, it’s a great idea to try to earn back customers who have stopped using your online ordering system for restaurants. The easiest way to do this is by sending them a targeted SMS. If they liked your product and used it before, there’s a good chance they will want to use it again.

6. Held Fun Competitions

This SMS contest is a perfect way to improve database engagement and loyalty. This can be a good way for your restaurant to gather customer feedback on new pizza recipes and other options you're considering. You can also use it as an opportunity to gauge how popular different toppings are among your customers. This kind of data is gold to any marketing team that works for restaurants.

 Here is a sample text message to send to customers for a fun competition:

  • Happy World Pasta Day! First 5 people who text back get a FREE pasta of their choice. Courtesy of [your restaurant name].

7. Invite Customers For Special Events

If you’re a restaurant, sending a text asking customers to book their tables for your special event is a great way to reach out and increase your table attendance. It works incredibly well if you are not located in a big city, and you have lots of restaurants nearby. By sending an invitation through text, you can stand out from the crowd!

8. Encourage Exciting Referrals

What is it that attracts your customers to refer their friends? It could be offering them a free gift or a discount coupon. Whatever the reason, the right kind of referral scheme can make SMS marketing campaigns a big success. Here are some promotional text message examples that will encourage people to bring a friend to your restaurant:

  • Hi [first name], you should come to [restaurant name] for dinner this Friday. Bring a friend and you’ll both get 25% off the bill!

  • Bring 2 family members to [restaurant name] and receive a free appetizer!

  • [Office name] just sent me a link that might interest you! It’s a free bag of chips, and all you have to do is text ‘CHIPS’ to the shortcode below. You can get a free bag of chips today only.

9. Announce an Exclusive Taste of a New Menu Item

You've just opened a new restaurant with a fantastic menu. If you want to give your place some buzz, try sharing the most popular menu items only at special private gatherings with the promise of something special for everyone who attends.

10. Send Random Discount Messages

Imagine that you are a restaurant owner and that you have a lot of regular customers who usually eat out on Sundays. What would happen if you sent them a blitz message on Sunday to offer 50% off hot chocolate? Well, they would come to the restaurant!

Read: Top TikTok Restaurant Marketing Tips & Ideas

AI SMS Marketing for Restaurants

The AI chatbots can help you elevate your reach by delivering personalized promotions to your customers. If you wish to build a chatbot for your restaurant, bank on us! We build custom restaurant chatbots powered by AI that can tailor your messages to each customer’s preferences. They ensure that every text hits the right taste buds, boosting engagement and skyrocketing sales.


Given this, you should see a big increase in your bottom line and it will be worth your effort to look at SMS marketing for restaurant platforms as an effective and reliable way of engaging with customers via text.

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