Smarter email marketing for restaurants

Email marketing is a cornerstone of any good restaurant promotional strategy. If you haven’t learned to maximize this digital marketing tactic to build loyalty with customers and boost sales, you’re way behind the curve.

Whether you rely heavily on email marketing or you use it as a supplement to social media or direct mail, resolve to engage in smarter email marketing for restaurants this year by keeping these aspects in mind.


Preparation is a key component of a quality email marketing campaign. Your staff might think you’re crazy for planning quintessentially American dishes for July 4 or researching green cocktails to be served on St. Patrick’s Day when it’s only February, but this type of forward-thinking mentality will serve you well when your competition is only focusing on the here and the now.

If you already know what specials you’re going to put on your menu and what deals you’ll be offering at certain times of the year, you can much more confidently enter into crafting your email-based outreach. Planning in advance means you have more time to generate excitement, plus you can better coordinate with your direct mail and social media efforts.

Think about adopting a countdown format for whatever’s ahead on your promotional schedule. If you’re holding a beer tasting, for example, you can start sending out regular announcements beginning four to six weeks ahead of time, counting down and building more interest among your loyal fan base.


Timing is another critical aspect of smarter email marketing. After all, if you send information about a time-sensitive discount too early, people will forget about it by the time the date to
take advantage of it rolls around.

On the other hand, if you wait too long to promote such an offer, recipients might not get the memo until it’s too late and end up missing out on a deal they would otherwise have jumped at the chance to get.

Every customer base is different, so consider testing the receptiveness of yours by sending information about promotions at different times and tracking response rates. Once you conclude what’s most effective, stick to it. Higher response rates are generally associated with regular outreach at standard intervals, so keep this in mind and schedule weekly emails for the same date and time.

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Compelling content

Ok so what if you know exactly what kind of exciting things are coming down the pike and are confident you’ve figured out the perfect formula to give customers a heads up without jumping the gun?

You’re in a good position, for sure, but you still need to make certain the actual content of your email marketing is as compelling as what you’re promoting. Use a short, personalized subject line to pique recipients’ interest, then deploy an optimal mix of eye-catching imagery and easy-to-read text to deliver the information in a clear and engaging manner.

Kanye Wes
Don’t be afraid to test new things occasionally or show some personality with your email marketing, either! You don’t have to abandon a tried and true strategy, but you may discover that your email marketing is much more effective when you freshen up your approach and have a little fun with it.

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