Community outreach ideas for restaurants

3 min read

Throughout this blog post we discuss community outreach ideas for restaurants attracting local customers.

Are you looking to improve your community relationships? Restaurants who improve their local relationships may trade some short-term profits, but they will gain far more long term.

Benefits of connecting to the community for restaurants

1.   Attract customers to your restaurant

The importance of connecting to the community for restaurants is that you can connect with customers and build relationships. This will help increase sales and revenue as well as allow you to compete with other restaurants in your area.

2.   Keep your restaurant in the forefront of people’s minds

If the locals are seeing your restaurant attached to many other attractions they will become more interested and intrigued in your restaurant.

3.   Establish yourself as a community brand

When you work with the local area, your restaurant develops a wholesome brand image that shows you’re part of the community.

4.   Creates an emotional connection with your customers - deepening loyalty

Showing a more wholesome and caring attitude towards your community and local area allows customers to feel an attachment to your restaurant.

5.   A great promotional tactic

With so much negativity in the world, truly great stories and endeavours stand out. When you contribute to your community through your restaurant, you not only improve the area but people take notice.

What ways can restaurants connect to the community?

Source ingredients locally

One of the best ways to support the local area for a restaurant is to source all produce locally.  Support the neighbouring butchers, farmers, bakers and vineyards.

With organic eating being a more important factor in people's eating habits, eating fresh, home-grown produce is an appealing choice.

Likewise, people like to make consumer decisions that support their local community too. By showing which companies you work with locally, you’re also advertising their business too.

Food truck or delivery service

With the recent lockdowns and social distancing over the past two years, the take away eating industry soared in popularity by a huge 76% in just a few short months.

Many innovative restaurants recognised this and used the lockdown as an opportunity to deliver restaurant-quality food to their customers. Instead of waiting for the lockdown to end.

Lead a community fundraiser

Hosting a charity event for a local charity is an amazing way to raise money for the local cause.  In addition to this, it allows customers to get a glimpse of your company brand and try your products.

If they like what they see, they’ll come back again.

Host a themed event

Experiences are soaring in popularity. People are looking to create memories and experience new events. As a restaurant, you can create these experiences for them.

Cocktail making, coffee tasting, chef demonstrations, cooking classes and so much more. These types of experiences give your community something of value to experience while buying your services. It’s a win-win model.

There are also many different groups you can market towards who are searching for experiences. Think of stag do’s and hen do’s as one example. These are large groups of people, looking to experience something different, fun and exciting.

You can monetize these events by selling the events in the form of gift experiences.

Gift experience vouchers are a fantastic way for people to buy into your brand while gifting fun and memorable event for their loved ones.

You can read more about experience gift vouchers here: What is the experience economy?

Offer space to local community groups

If you have a great space and some time to give, allowing your locals to use your space is a fantastic service to them.

Ensure you work with people you trust and set clear boundaries of what's acceptable and what isn’t when they’re using your space. You still have your business to look after!

But with mutual trust and care for your local community, your relationship with them will flourish and thrive.

Stay in touch with local events

If there are local events in the community, sign up and get involved. Whether this is sponsoring local teams or partaking in community activities.

You’ll get your name out there, make great friends and strengthen local relationships.

Getting started with your community outreach ideas for restaurants

In this post, we’ve outlined a list of practical community outreach ideas for restaurants. We hope these ideas inspire you to create community projects that benefit both your restaurant and your local community.

For more information on making your restaurant profitable see a past post of ours here: Make more restaurant profit with vouchers.

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