The rise of the internet and digital technology have forever changed the foodservice industry. In the days before the internet, business owners relied on walk-ins, word of mouth, and print reviews to fill empty tables. Today, many businesses have pursued a more aggressive marketing strategy centered around digital media. Consumers can now access information with just a few taps on their smartphones, and it’s important to capture their attention if you want your baking business to survive.
With sky-high failure rates in the food-service industry, not to mention the cutthroat nature of the business, having a proper marketing plan has never been this important. The internet provides many opportunities for baking businesses to market themselves. Even if you operate a small business out of your kitchen, you can make a dent on the market if you do things the right way.
With the right strategies, you can make a sustainable living selling baked goods. Here are five tips you can use to get your business noticed online.
1. Establish a social media presence
Scroll through your Facebook or Instagram feed and you’re bound to see photos of food. We live in an age when consumers are more than happy to share every little detail about their lives, including the food they eat. This presents a unique opportunity to get some free advertising. By investing in social media marketing, you can make your business stand out among the crowd.
Make sure to post photos and videos of your baked creations. Eventually, people will find your page and order your products. And once your customers start talking about your goods, more buzz is generated, and the orders will start coming in. You can even hire corporate video production services to give your videos that professional look.
2. Tell a story
Competition in the food-service industry is notoriously fierce. You have to compete with dozens of other businesses in your area, all offering the same thing. And with more and more bakers entering the digital arena, consumers find it more difficult to tell business apart. How can you generate sales if your business can’t offer something different?
One way to make your brand more memorable is to create a story. Tell your reasons why you started your business and what drives you to bake every single day. Showing a bit of vulnerability allows you to connect with your customers on an emotional level. Once you show your human side, people will remember the story.
Make sure to highlight your brand story on your website and promotional material. You can even design marketing campaigns that make use of your unique narrative.
3. Design a great menu
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. When you think about it, ordering food online is just a series of decisions. They have to weigh their options, and finally, choose the food they want to order. With that in mind, you want to make sure that your customers will have an easy time ordering from your business.
This means designing a great menu and uploading it to your social media pages. Even if you run your baking business out of your home kitchen, you want your customers to think that they’re ordering from a proper bakery or restaurant. Consider using professional photos accompanied by compelling descriptions to make your products stand out.
4. Start a rewards program
A rewards program can help spur repeat business by encouraging customers to keep ordering from your baking business. Marketing studies have shown that repeat customers spend three times as much as one-time customers. The more they buy from your business, the more freebies they get, so make sure to make your rewards compelling enough to get customers to return.
The benefits of a rewards program go beyond increased revenue. Repeat customers are more loyal to your business, which can be helpful for your marketing efforts. Word of mouth remains a powerful tool in the digital age, and repeat customers are more likely to recommend your brand to their friends and family.
The bottom line
These marketing strategies will certainly take your baking business to the next level. But you need to make sure that the fundamentals are solid before going all-in on digital marketing. No amount of airbrushing can make up for poor customer service and subpar products. It also helps to enlist the services of a professional to help you with your marketing.