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This is the second article in a five-part series that details exactly what you need to market your restaurant and make it a success. One of the biggest mistakes many restaurants make is printing their own marketing materials. They view print marketing as an expense, when it is actually an investment in revenue generation. Desktop-printed menus, brochures, flyers, and postcards are dull and lifeless; but the same pieces printed on state-of-the-art presses are sleek and attractive. Your restaurant customers crave a friendly and inviting atmosphere, so choose an affordable online printing company such as PsPrint to deliver your message with professionalism.
Menus - Perhaps the most obvious restaurant marketing tool is the menu. Still, menus are often overlooked despite the fact that they're powerful sales tools. All of your other print marketing efforts get patrons in the door, but the menu can upsell, close deals, push drinks and desserts, and drive profit margins through the roof. Business cards - Business cards are cheap and expendable. Print as many as you can hand out, and make sure everyone you meet has one. Try printing a mini-menu or coupon on the back of your business card to earn business. Postcards - Postcards are likewise extremely cost effective and a great way to showcase a monthly dish, drink or dessert. Turn your restaurant postcard into an advertisement with coupons and you'll get more patrons eager to try out your menu. Posters - Strategically placed posters can grab attention. Try community bulletin boards, and if you're close to a large institution such as a university, tech firm or factory, see if you can purchase some ad space in hallways and on bulletin boards and place your posters there. Maybe you have someone on the inside who can do this for your free of charge. Your restaurant posters should make passers-by hungry for your restaurants menu with large, scrumptious images. Flyers - Like posters, flyers can be placed on bulletin boards and anywhere else your target patron frequents. Under windshield wipers in the grocery store parking lot is a good option for a restaurant. Booklets/guides - A rather unique yet extremely effective approach to restaurant marketing is to print booklets to send in the mail as menus your customers can keep on-hand for takeout orders or to get them to your establishment. Infuse your booklet with sales information about your fresh food sources, staff training, preparation, and other features and their benefits to your customers. Catalogs - Some well-branded restaurants, such as the Ohio-based Winking Lizard Tavern, sell T-shirts, shot glasses, beer mugs and other merchandise to customers. Another great example is Cracker Barrel, which has a shop in every restaurant. Brochures - Your brochure should include images, features, benefits of your restaurant and your best dishes along with your features and benefits. Don't forget to include a great coupon and call to action! Calendars - Everyone loves (and uses) free calendars. Try a different dessert, drink or entrée listing each month. Other materials you should consider producing include a website, door hangers and a corporate identity package (complete with letterhead, envelopes, brochure, flyer, business card and pocket folder).