Exploring Identity & Inspiring Change in Hospitality: A Conversation with Black Hospitality Leaders
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Could you imagine opening up a restaurant and not putting its name on the front? How about if it cost you nothing to do so? It would be madness, right?
That’s essentially what restaurant operators are doing when they ignore social media.
If you’re not present on the major social channels, you’re missing a huge opportunity to market your restaurant to a giant audience, drive traffic to your website, and promote direct bookings. And when it comes to restaurant marketing, Facebook is one of the most important platforms in the world.
Facebook is often where potential customers begin looking for restaurant recommendations and information like opening hours and menu details. Research shows that 72% of customers have used Facebook for a retail or restaurant decision. Although Instagram marketing is also important, according to research, guests are more likely to leave higher ratings on Facebook than any other channel.
Your restaurant’s Facebook page is where the platform’s users are going to land when they search for your restaurant or click on an ad. This is part of your digital storefront: a place where you can give them information, post updates and convince them to make a booking.
The point of the bio, which sits in the About tab, is to grab the reader’s attention and keep them engaged enough to click through and make a booking, or at least, to find out more info by looking at a menu or more images. The Our Story feature is a great way to make your bio stand out. Added in 2018, it makes your bio more prominent and pairs it with a large image.
When users click See More, the bio appears in a floating window with the image above it. Here’s what it looks like on your Facebook page:
And after you click See More:
Now that we’ve established what a Facebook bio is and why you need one, you’ve got to sit down and write the thing. But what should it say? It should be concise yet packed with information that compels the reader to make a booking. Here are our tips to help you write a great Facebook bio for your restaurant.
The first thing most people do when they write a bio is talk about themselves, and all their greatest awards and accolades. While it’s good to mention these achievements, a great restaurant bio is also focused on translating your history and accolades to the reader. You want to offer context for the alluring experience your restaurant’s social media presence promises.
For that reason, you can’t go wrong focusing on the experience of the guest. A memorable meal is about having a great conversation with your partner, or an epic night with your best friends. Focus on how your restaurant facilitates the making of these long-lasting memories. Your bio should leave an image in the reader’s head of them having a great time at your restaurant.
People are hardwired to engage with stories, rather than lists of facts. It’s a cliché these days, but you have to tell your story or people will disengage.
Relate your restaurant’s story to its core values. Tell them what struggles you had to overcome, what you learned from it, and how it impacted your values. In telling your story, show the reader what makes your restaurant unique without explicitly listing out its best features. A little bit of mystique goes a long way.
Your bio should be consistent in tone and personality with everything else your brand puts out. There are many ways to differentiate your brand, and its voice reveals a lot about your core values to the reader, as well as being a way of grabbing their attention and keeping them engaged.
People are more likely to engage with a brand whose voice is unique. Stand out from the noise and reflect your brand in an interesting but authentic way. You could use humor or unexpected language, or be slightly controversial to stand out. But you should always stay true to your brand values and remember who your target customer is.
While it might be tempting to tap out a few choice words straight into Facebook’s text input box, you should be wary of jumping the gun. Type up your bio in a separate document outside of your Facebook page and then get some feedback from colleagues. Then once you have a good first draft, be sure to run it by all the key stakeholders and take their input on board. And don’t forget to use a spellchecker!
Now that you know the formula for a good bio, it’s almost time to start writing. Before you do, here’s some inspiration from a few best-in-class Facebook bios. As you’ll see, these restaurants are all very different, but their bios relate to the values of each restaurant and paint a vivid picture of the experience the guest can expect.
Mr. Fogg’s, a London bar with a 19th-century explorer theme, does a great job of creating a compelling story with its Facebook bio. (You can see it in the example above.) This bio kicks off the guest's experience by invoking the strong, consistent voice of an old-timey gentleman pulling you into an adventure. It's a great example of how to convey the restaurant’s character, charm, and drinks offering in just two paragraphs.
Chef David Hawksworth’s eponymous Vancouver restaurant displays its values front and center and backs up its claims with a colorful image. The bio references the awards the restaurant has won, but focuses more on its values of cultural diversity and local pride. It finishes by helping guests imagine themselves enjoying a power breakfast or after-work drinks at the restaurant.
"New American" restaurant Pinstripes presents itself as a brand that cares about its food and promises a fun, elevated experience. Its Facebook bio focuses on the restaurant serving as a venue for great times with friends, rather than on the restaurant itself, and uses a strong tagline, rather than the generic Our Story title.
Otium’s bio is a great example of a simple, straightforward presentation of the restaurant's values and story. Instead of using complex formatting, it highlights the values of the restaurant, leverages the name of its well-known chef, and tells the story of its founding. The main features and guest experience are all weaved into the tale, leaving the diner hungry to make a reservation.
British celebrity chef Marcus Wareing has three London restaurants. All are different, but they are united by common values. The Facebook bio for the restaurant group includes all three together, allowing them to present each concept as part of a cohesive whole while still spotlighting what makes each unique.
There’s no time like the present and, hopefully, we’ve given you enough inspiration and useful tips for you to write a killer Facebook bio for your restaurant. Remember to tie everything to your restaurant’s core values, focus on the customer’s experience and keep it short and sweet, leaving them hungry to find out more.
For more social media tips, check out our guide to creating a social media marketing plan.