Whether you’re dreaming of opening a restaurant one day or looking for marketing tips to promote the restaurant you already own, one way to learn about restaurant marketing? Take a look at those who’ve come before! And this case study in restaurant marketing is an excellent place to start.
Meet Harry and Judy Kilmer
In 2011, Harry and Judy Kilmer bought The Old Kettle, a saloon in the small town of Wabash, Indiana. Harry had always loved to cook, and he dreamed of one day owning a restaurant in the heart of town. Buying The Old Kettle was a dream come true.
The Old Kettle was an establishment in Wabash. It had been around since the 50s, when it started as a drive-in restaurant. It was converted to a bar in the 60s, and had been a haven for locals ever since.
When the Kilmers bought the bar to turn it into a pub, they started facing challenge after challenge. There was cash flow, but the Kilmer’s didn’t have a solid business plan.
With the help of two marketers, however, the Kilmers were able to transform the dying saloon into a thriving local business. How? In this case, simply creating a cohesive brand that included an accessible, engaging website and a readable, cohesive menu, made all the difference. You can learn from Harry and Judy, too. Here’s a look at how they made their small business succeed!
A few takeaways
- Customers have to be able to find you.
No small business works if your customers don’t know how to find you! Simply creating a website or a Facebook page is critical for driving sales.
- Menus matter.
When potential customers go to a restaurant’s website, the most common thing they’re looking for is your menu. Having a website where your menu is easy to find is key to success. Your menu should also cohere with the rest of your brand, including fonts, texts, images — as well as recipes — that go along with the overall vibe of your restaurant.
- It’s all about the brand.
Your menu and website should reflect your business strategy — which is the heart of your brand. If your restaurant is like the Kilmer’s — an old timey grill that features beer and pub food — include that front and center on your website and anywhere else you market your restaurant.
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