Building trust and relationships within your community is an important part of any new business that hopes to be successful. We’ve all experienced the disappointment that comes when a new restaurant opens up in your area of town and puts in little or no effort in getting involved with its local community. On opening day, excitement may be in the air and for the first few months, business may run smoothly. However, we believe there’s always something more we can do to further support our local community and it’s these little efforts that make us stand out.
What follows are some of Captivate’s top tips on how your restaurant can stay actively engaged with its local community.
A great way to show the customers that you’re giving back to the community is to donate to local charities. There are many ways to do this. Simply having collection boxes on the bar in your restaurant works or you can consider donating a percentage of a special food item to a charity too. This is also a good way to upsell a specific dish.
Developing friendships with the businesses surrounding you is a surefire way to cultivate loyalty and find a network of regular customers. It is extremely likely that wherever you may be in the world, not including the North Pole or somewhere equally remote, there’ll be local food companies, ice companies, alcohol and drinks companies, electrical companies - the list is endless - all waiting to connect with you.
Researching all the different community groups in your area and inviting them to use your venue as a meeting spot where the can host events is a great way to develop relationships. Think of local schools, book clubs, sports clubs - anything and everything! A plus side is, you may find a group that you can join too!
Start projects that giveaway meals or treats to those in your local community who most deserve it as well as rewarding them for their fundraising efforts. You could even ask members of the public to vote for their favourite local business.
A great way to help any local homeless shelters is to start up a food bank in your restaurant. This could be something as simple as creating a food donations box that anyone can give to. Or, you could offer to cater for the shelter once or twice a month. There are some great apps out there too, like OLIO, a food sharing network, who aims to reduce food waste. It’s super easy to get involved.
Make sure to include a page on your website that highlights all the wonderful local businesses who are supplying your food and drink. For example, if you stock delicious sourdough from a local bakery, let people know! Many people will be interested, especially if they live locally, just where these delicious ingredients have been sourced.
Any local food festivals or charity events coming up? Why not offer up your wonderful catering services! It’s a great way to increase your fanbase. Plus, you may be offered many more catering jobs in the future.
Getting involved with your local community should be exciting!
Get in contact with the Captivate team this week and we’ll help you develop lifelong friendships and a sea of happy, regular customers.
Call us on 020 3954 6253 or fill in a contact form here.