facebook advertising for restaurants facebook live

If you’re not using Facebook Live yet as part of your restaurant marketing strategy, you’re missing out on one of the biggest restaurant industry trends today. While using Facebook in one more context may seem like a bit of a time suck, it doesn’t have to be. When used with a bit of creativity, it can be a lot of fun for you, your staff, and your customers.

A few tips to remember: Facebook lets you broadcast for up to 90 minutes, and they advise at least 10 to give your viewers time to catch you live. You don’t need a hard script for these, but do enough planning so that you have an idea of what you want to say and what the goal is. Remember, this is live! It’s ok to be a bit casual and let your personality shine.

Need a little inspiration?

Here are some ideas about Facebook advertising for restaurants to get you started.

Launch your new restaurant menu.

Adding some new restaurant menu ideas to the mix? Changes to your menu are the perfect place to start testing out Facebook Live. Sit down with your chef and chat about what is being added to this season’s menu. Think about having some dishes prepared for colorful visuals, and go ahead and taste some dishes on camera. Have some of the special ingredients out, and talk about what they are and where you got them.

Not using Facebook Live yet as part of your restaurant marketing strategy? You’re missing out.

Introduce new wines on your list.

Sit down with your wine director or sommelier and talk about what new bottles are being added to your wine list or by-the-glass. Think about pouring some glasses for tasting on screen, and talk about the different dishes these wines would pair well with and why. The more your guests know about your wine list, the more they’re likely to try new wines.

Change up the scenery and visit your producers.

If your restaurant uses supplies from local farms and producers, head out to there for a visit and take your phone with you. Show your guests where their food is raised and grown, and connect them with the people working hard to get food to their plates. If you’re off the beaten path a bit, be sure you have a strong signal before starting to broadcast, and also that you’re out of the wind.

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Give a behind the scenes sneak peek.

Your guests are familiar with your dining room, but would probably love to see what goes on behind the scenes. Take them on a tour of the wine cellar or give them a view from behind the bar. Introduce the team working hard in the kitchen to get the food to the plate. Think about highlighting some of your best sellers. If you’re known for delicious handmade pasta, show them being made.

What is Facebook Live?

Facebook recently added the Facebook Live feature to their mobile application, which allows users to broadcast live videos from their mobile devices. When taking a Facebook Live video those who have liked your business’s Facebook page will receive a notification that your business is live streaming. Thus encouraging those who have liked your page to tune into your video update. This live streaming can be accessed on the main dashboard of the Facebook app, underneath sharing a status.

Host a Q&A.

Hosting a Q&A is a great opportunity to talk directly to your audience. For these types of live broadcasts, be sure to promote it in advance so people can plan to “attend” and participate. Also, it’s helpful to establish a theme to keep you focused. Maybe you can talk about what it’s like being a woman restaurateur, bartender tricks to try at home, or what the steps are in opening a restaurant in your city. Keeping with a theme will help keep you on track when the questions start rolling in.

facebook live marketing strategies for restaurants

Broadcast your special event.

Hosting a special event? Broadcast live from the event to give your followers a taste of what it’s like to be there. This can give people who may not have been able to attend a peek into the action, and it can also give people on the fence about attending a glimpse into what it’s like, persuading them to buy a ticket for the next one. If your event is for a special guest chef, or winemaker, plan to speak to them directly for a few minutes.  

However you decide to use Facebook Live, be sure you have fun and remain professional, while also letting your personality shine through. Restaurant industry trends come and go, and not all of them may fit your personality, but giving them a try may surprise you.

Have you used Facebook Live at your restaurant? What did you learn?

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Kristin lives on the West Side of Providence with her wine blogger husband. When she's not co-hosting their monthly wine tastings, she's planning her next travel adventure and daydreaming about Spanish jamón. She can often be found pouring over travel guides at her favorite neighborhood spot, Nick's on Broadway.