Latest Thinking

The Marketing Plan

Without A Roadmap How Do You Get To Your Destination?

Why do restaurants & hotels fail?

No plan for success!

A few key questions you have to ask yourself when you are operating a business are;

  • How am I going to be successful?
  • What will I need to do to ensure I can generate enough sales & profits to not only build a good business but to grow it over the long term?
  • What do I need to do in the short term to make sure my growth is on track?
  • Am I prepared for the highs and lows of my marketplace?
  • What’s my strategy for dealing with good times and bad?
  • Am I doing the right thing? Am I making positive progress?

And while the answers will vary from concept to concept and operator to operator, the one constant among every successful business is the need for a strategic plan.

It has to cover more than the 4P’s taught in Marketing 101: product, price, place, and promotion.

Effective and successful restaurant & hotel marketing is about every single detail that happens inside your four walls on an every guest, every table, every day basis and the effective messaging that goes on outside them.

The top 10 components to a successful plan address:

1. Execution. You have to walk the talk. Every part of the guest experience has to be executed or no amount of external marketing will help your business grow.

2. Effective positioning. Who are you to your guests? Are you offering any differentiated value or are you just another commodity business in your market?

3. Great storytelling. How good are you at telling your story? What’s your “story”? It’s who are you, what your business is about, what you do, the value you offer and why.

4. The UEP or “Unique Experience Proposition”. How do you connect socially with your target market in delivering a guest experience worth being loyal to?

5. The right media. What media will you use to deliver your message? Why? How? Who? How much should you budget for marketing?

6. Results. What measurement tools will you use to determine success? Effective restaurant marketing must be built on a strategic foundation of thorough analysis of the facts (the numbers) about the market, your competition, your guests, financial history, marketing history, the industry, and outside forces that will impact your business.

7. Culture. How will you create the proper culture to support your marketing efforts and create buy-in from every stakeholder? How much of your budget do you need to allocate to new trial versus building loyalty?

8. Defining your guest. Who is your target market? Why? How do you know? Will it change? How often? How will you monitor it? What percentage of your business is new vs. repeat? How frequently do they show up? What’s your check average? Do guests primarily visit alone, in twos or in groups?

9. Context. What’s the context for everything you do? Menu? Location? Marketing mix? Pricing? Offerings? Services? Production? Service?

10. Accountability. Who will do what? Why? Who has the expertise to execute properly? Do you have it? Can you afford it? Is it the proper expertise?

Are you thinking this is more complex than running a few ads or a few tweets? I hope so.