“Social media has had had an immense impact on the catering world and offers a huge opportunity for companies to grow their business with minimal investment. There are numerous platforms available to businesses, Twitter, Instagram, Periscope but the most popular is certainly Facebook.
“To this day, Facebook remains the world’s biggest social media platform and Facebook adverts certainly remain one of the most important components of any social media marketing strategy. However, it’s embracing the advertising methods that work and are relevant, in order to get more bang for your buck.
“There are so many Facebook ads available to users and this can often confuse people. Which is the best ad to use for their target market? From photo ads to instant experience ads as well as formats, specifications, placements, objectives, and calls-to-action, there’s actually quite a lot to figure out.
“So many adverts are available but my advice for food establishments is to not just worry what advert you are going to use, but what you are putting on it. Content is king, so think about what will appeal to social media users and then promote that content, so things like offers, discounts, events linked to special occasions etc.
“My top tips to really drive your bookings using Facebook would be…
“Regardless of what advert you are using, each requires an image. Images are an excellent method of advertising and it is the first thing customers will see looking at your advert.
“Single image ads are the easiest to make and when well executed, tick all the boxes. Image ads are ideal for brand awareness, reach and engagement. Below are a few tips for every image ad:
- Choose a worthwhile topic. Promote something that potential customers will want to see
- High res, quality pictures. If the quality isn’t at its best, it certainly won’t help the advert
- Use an image with very little text, ads that have little or no text perform 20% better than other more detailed images
- Utilise Facebook’s help, its Image Text Check tool is ideal for making sure you have a good text-to-visual ratio.
“The perfect ad when wanting to showcase a number of products. This type of advert allows you to upload from two to 10 pictures that users swipe through. Not only that, each image comes with a call to action and are excellent for lead generation.
“Below are a few tips for carousel ads:
- Utilise the format and use each slide to showcase what you have on offer
- Use images that complement each other
- Of course, use your best images first in the carousel
- Be creative and perhaps use a carousel to tell a story or reveal a new product.
“The fastest growing ad format, Facebook stories have proved to be extremely popular and have proven to increase sales, particularly online. In a recent Facebook study, it found that after seeing a product on a story:
- 56% browsed the brand’s website to get more information
- 50% looked for the product or services on websites that sell it
- 34% visited a store to check out the product or service.
“Obviously, the key with these ads is creating some nice video, which can be done inexpensively, even with your own camera. However, restaurants and eateries really need something that sells the company and services in a nice, slick visual way, so sometimes it’s worth investing in professional video.
“The ultimate aim of a link ad is to drive more traffic to your website. They’re extremely easy to do and the ad is completely clickable.
“Facebook link ad tips:
- Image quality. High res and clear constantly produce the best results
- Short and sweet. Descriptive text and an attention grabbing headline
- Final destination. Tell people where the advert will take them. After all, everybody wants to know where they are going!”
By David O’Keefe, digital marketing director at Fat Media, one of the UK’s leading digital marketing firms