Ok…after reading a lot of comments about people being protective with their addressed and personal info… I really was interested in how much business could be produced with just using email and text message offers as the primary source. I understand that first you need those email addresses and phone numbers to text. That is the catch to all of this. After that… it seems like a very inexpensive way to mass email a monthly or weekly offer and with the text version… why not a surprise special of some sort on a slow night. “next hour… xyz special…order now with code abc” Seems like a good way to bump up sales in slow times. I know this does not address the way to bring in new first time customers. With so much of the world digital these days… I just wonder how effective using this route after say the initial door hanger or mailing to get someone to order would be???
We do something along this line from time to time, maybe it’s time to again. We have a pretty decent Facebook following so we’ll pop up an offer with a limited number available, such as “for the first 5 orders only”. It works. And…who’s to say when we hit our 5th order.
For a different approach try blue tooth and facebook advertising, more below.
You are off course correct, you need to get the numbers and telephone numbers first. You also have to be carefull of being identified as a spammer. The law in the uk is that you are not allowed to send unsolicited emails to individuals, even if you giving away free food.
If you do decide to send emails messages you will need software to send them, that is if you don’t want to do copy paste, try sendblaster just google it. You should also offer a means of unsubribing, you can do this it sendblaster or you can add a line “to remove please send a blank email to remove@???.com”. If your website gets seen as a spammer by google, good night your website sales. You must also offer a means of stopping text messages. Never used this but the are a lot of pay as you go mass messaging systems out there, about £0.09 a go.
Bluetooth. There quite a bit of software out there now, that you set up bluetooth at your store, anyone who walks pasts with an open Bluetooth connection (range of 100m) you can send them a message automatically, after the cost of the software £100 ish, the message is free, being used a lot in night clubs.
Try also Facebook advertising. You can set this up so that your ad will only show to facebookers who live within your encatchment area, on a Friday and Saturday night, to 20-35 year olds, or what ever you decide.
On all these methods you will need a website for people to go to and see your offerings. Don’t skimp on your website, there is no point in spending time and money in sending people to a website that is poor. It’s like putting big engines on a plane that cant fly, it will just crash quicker. Make sure your website works before you spend money in promoting it.
Think about google ad words as well. You can also make adds local, can prove to be expensive though if you set them up wrong, buy a download PDF by Perry Marshall google ad words course, $100, good investment if your serious about ad words.
Also install google analytics on your website so you can see what works and what does not.
Hope that helps
There are essentially two types of marketing you can do. I call them front of the house and back of the house. Front of the house is for getting new customers. Back of the house is marketing to your existing customers. Both are very important, and you should have a strategy for them.
There aren’t a lot of options for front of the house. Basically you have door hangers, mass mailers, and newspaper inserts. You can use some facebook ads, but YMMV with this, as it can have a negative ROI.
Back of the house is where you can get creative. Pick up a copy of Seth Godin’s Permission Marketing, and give it a read.
Instead of annoying potential customers by interrupting their most coveted commodity – time – Permission Marketing offers consumers incentives to accept advertising voluntarily. Now this Internet pioneer introduces a fundamentally different way of thinking about advertising products and services. By reaching out only to those individuals who have signaled an interest in learning more about a product, Permission Marketing enables companies to develop long-term relationships with customers, create trust, build brand awareness – and greatly improve the chances of making a sale.
This is easy to do with email marketing, but the trick is to make offers that people see some value in, not just spam.
We are going to be making our own cookies with the sole intention of advertising. We are never going to be busy enough in-store to make a worthwhile amount on cookies, however I have agreed with the local sub and convienience stores to stock our branded cookies that will be in sealed pack with coupons and menu promotions inside.
Its cheap enough to try and gets to a younger audience which I am not getting to with menu drops and direct mail.
Just to touch on what MARK was responding too… I was not looking for this to be used as a mass blind email or text…ie: SPAM to most… but for established customers that have given their email and text info to your store ie: permission to receive offers. Getting those email addresses and phone numbers is the trick. Traditional ways of advertising are nowhere near dead…and need to be used for the initial catching of customers. There are a few operations that walk/drive by or word of mouth is all that is needed but most still need to advertise. Personally, as a customer, I hate door hangers and rarely read the local ad papers or spam mail that fills the mailbox. Do I miss out on good offers…I bet I do. Do I get a lot of spam in my email…HeII Yes! Just like most others do. I do also get a handful of good offers every month from places that I gave my info too and use them often. Petsmart is one of them. Every month I get a 20% off on dogfood coupon that is good for 3 days from the date I get it. It gets me in the door as I have 3 hungry weiner dogs! I just think that if you can get a customers attention for that instant sale when you the provider want it…,.it benefits both sides of the equation. The customer gets a deal and you fill a slow time void. It is a win-win! How many times have you been driving home and trying to decide where to stop to pick up dinner? What sign looks most appealing? They all do not as they are the same old choices. Then you get a text… like Deacon said…,. next 5 orders…etc. I like the comment… who knows when #5 is actually ordered! Even a mid afternoon text or email… “Tonight only…etc…” I think this form of instant advertising is going to be the next big thing…you just need the contact info to start with. Also…as with all the spam that is out there…that you do not send a daily deal everyday! You then become spam and a problem not an exciting new offer. There has to be a balance here for it too work. I would say tracking who orders via these offers is important as they need to be placed into a sub-group that do receive more offers than others. If done effectively I think this could lead to a very cost-effective way to promote your business at a very reasonable cost with a very high ROI.
You could start advertising your website through search engine optimization and gaining organic traffic. Plus local optimization techniques are becoming very very important, where you don’t even have to have a website just a google business listing.
There are sites like http://buy-a-review.com that gets people to review your business on Google that it comes up in the top local results/map results.
You could always do something like that.
We use a really good rewards program. Our customers are happy to give us their email addresses. The nice thing about it is once they join the program all the email messages go out automatically! After the first couple of months our sales are up about $2000 a week!