How to Turn Your Restaurant Staff into Social Media Managers

friends cheersing their drinks at a restaurant

In the age of Instagrammable everything, a robust social media presence is no longer a luxury for restaurants—it’s a necessity. With 72% of consumers using social media platforms like Facebook to make restaurant or retail decisions, standing out in the digital crowd has become crucial for attracting new customers and building loyalty. 

However, creating a successful social media presence can be daunting, especially for independent businesses with limited resources. Hiring a dedicated marketing team might seem like a dream, and outsourcing to agencies can feel disconnected from your brand’s unique voice. How can you bridge the gap and create engaging social media content without breaking the bank?

The answer lies within your own four walls: your amazing staff. By empowering your staff to become #HashtagHeroes, you can cultivate a vibrant social media presence that resonates with your target audience, fosters customer engagement, and drives sales—all without breaking the bank.

The Secret Sauce: Empowering Your Restaurant Staff to Manage Social Media

For many local restaurants, coffee shops, and bars, your staff can become a secret weapon for social media success. They’re the heart and soul of your business, interacting with customers daily and experiencing the energy firsthand. Imagine harnessing their passion and knowledge to create authentic, engaging content that resonates with your audience.

At Olive + Leo, we’ve seen countless restaurants thrive on social media thanks to the magic of empowered staff. In this article, we’ll explore some best practices that Olive + Leo users and other restaurant managers can use to turn their staff into social media stars.

How can you unlock this hidden potential? Let’s delve into some practical strategies.

1. Content Captains

Designate a content captain for each shift, someone who can be the point person for capturing and posting content. Look for people who are naturally enthusiastic about your brand and comfortable with social media. This individual could be a host or someone with a bit more capacity to manage social media responsibilities while still fulfilling their primary role. 

2. Employee Training Workshops

You don’t want to leave your team in the dark. Consider offering basic social media training workshops to equip them with essential skills like photography basics, storytelling techniques, and best practices for interacting with customers online. Be sure to provide them with clear guidelines on brand voice, content types, and what content to avoid, ensuring alignment with your overall strategy.

4. Micro-Moments and Macro-Impact

Encourage staff to share authentic glimpses into their daily lives. This could be a chef plating a dish with artistic flair, a bartender shaking up a signature cocktail, or a waiter capturing a heartwarming customer interaction. When shared on social media, these micro-moments weave a powerful narrative about your restaurant’s culture and personality.

5. Incentivize Employee Engagement

Offer rewards or incentives for employees who actively contribute to the restaurant’s social media efforts. This could include gift cards, bonuses, or recognition at staff meetings. By engaging and rewarding your staff, you can create excitement about contributing in a major way to the success of your business. 

Social Content Ideas to Ignite Your Feed

Now, let’s fuel your staff’s creativity with some social media content ideas.

1. Behind-the-Scenes Peek

Take your followers on a journey through your kitchen! Showcase the artistry of your chefs, the unique ingredients you use, or the preparation process of your signature dishes.

2. Customer Love

Share positive reviews, testimonials, and photos of happy diners enjoying their meals. This social proof builds trust and encourages potential customers to try your restaurant.

4. Seasonal Specials

Highlight seasonal ingredients, limited-time offers, and special events through eye-catching visuals and engaging captions. This keeps your content fresh and relevant, enticing customers to try something new.

5. Interactive Polls and Quizzes

Engage your audience with interactive polls or quizzes related to food preferences, upcoming events, or menu ideas. Encourage followers to participate and share their opinions.

6. User-Generated Content

Encourage customers to share their photos and experiences at your restaurant by creating a branded hashtag and reposting their content on your own social media channels. This is a powerful way to turn customers into content marketing ideas and create a sense of community among your followers.

Build a Thriving Social Media Presence with Your Team

Remember, with the right approach and a little team spirit, you can turn your restaurant into a social media sensation. All it takes are a few #HashtagHeroes!

Interested in learning more about how Olive + Leo can help? 

Olive + Leo understands the challenges that restaurant owners face in navigating the world of social media marketing. That’s why we’ve integrated social strategy into our digital marketing platform, providing monthly strategy and content recommendations to help restaurants eliminate the guesswork of what to post and when.

Explore our platform and discover affordable solutions designed to equip restaurants, coffee shops, and bars with the tools they need to unleash customer loyalty and thrive in the digital age.

Turning First-Timers into Forever Fans: How Text Marketing Fuels Customer Loyalty

someone using a card reader to pay at a restaurant

The restaurant industry is fiercely competitive when it comes to capturing customer attention and retaining loyalty. New eateries seem to pop up overnight and cultivating loyal customers can feel like an uphill battle. You’ve poured your heart and soul into building your business, fostering a welcoming atmosphere, and crafting a delicious menu. But the fear of losing patrons to a new competitor across the street is a constant thought in the back of your mind.

At Olive + Leo, we understand this struggle. We’ve also seen how text marketing can become the secret weapon your restaurant needs to thrive in today’s competitive landscape. Think of it as hand-held hospitality—a way to extend the warm experience you provide in-house to foster a genuine connection with customers.  

In this post, we’ll explore how text marketing fuels customer loyalty, transforming casual diners into your most passionate advocates.

Benefits of Text Marketing for Cultivating Customer Loyalty

Customers crave convenience and personalized interaction. Text marketing delivers both in spades, making it an ideal platform to build lasting relationships with your patrons. Here’s how:

1. Customers Want to Engage Through Text

Studies show that a whopping 91% of customers express a desire to receive text messages from businesses. Text messaging is a familiar, convenient channel that allows customers to interact with your business on their own terms and at a time that works best for them. 

2. Direct Communication and Personalization

The beauty of text marketing lies in its ability to deliver targeted messages directly to your customers’ pockets and purses. Forget the noise of cluttered social media feeds or the potential for emails to get lost in spam folders. With text messages, you have a direct line of communication, allowing you to personalize your outreach with special offers, birthday wishes, or exclusive deals based on their preferences.

3. Instant Gratification

Modern diners crave immediate satisfaction. Text messages deliver just that. Some studies show that over 50% of consumers make a purchase after receiving a marketing text. Imagine a busy lunch break—a customer receives a text with a special discount on a quick lunch combo they love. With a few taps, they can order it for pick-up, saving time and effort. This convenience enhances the customer experience and fosters loyalty towards your restaurant.

4. Integration with Loyalty Programs

Platforms like Olive + Leo seamlessly integrate text marketing with your loyalty program. This allows you to reward customers for their continued patronage and fosters a sense of value for their commitment. In the next section, we’ll highlight specific ways to integrate text marketing into your customer loyalty program.

Loyalty Program Ideas for Restaurants Powered by Text Marketing

Olive + Leo provides the tools to design a loyalty program that perfectly complements your restaurant’s unique offerings. Here are a few inspiring ideas to get you started:

1. Points-Based Loyalty Program

With the Olive + Leo platform, customers earn points for every visit. These can be redeemed for discounts, free meals, or other rewards.

A common way our merchants incorporate text marketing is by sending customers text notifications with their current points balance, reminders when they are close to earning a reward, and alerts when they have enough points to redeem. For example, you could set up an automated text that says, “Congratulations! You’ve earned enough points for a free appetizer. Show this text to redeem!”

2. Birthday Rewards Program

One simple way to cultivate customer loyalty is to treat customers to a special reward or discount during their birthday month as a token of appreciation.

With the Olive + Leo platform, restaurants can collect birthdays during sign-up or through opt-in and send personalized birthday wishes with special offers via text message at the beginning of the birthday month. For example, send customers a message that says, “Happy Birthday! Enjoy a complimentary dessert with your meal this month. Just show this text when you dine with us.”

3. VIP Treatment for Your Loyalty Program

The Olive + Leo platform also allows you to offer exclusive perks like priority reservations, limited-edition menu items, or complimentary upgrades to customers who sign up for your loyalty program. You can send personalized offers and invitations to VIP-only events via text message or remind loyalty club members of their benefits and encourage them to visit.

4. Feedback and Reward Program

With Olive + Leo’s two-way text communication tool, you can encourage customer feedback on their dining experience by offering rewards for completing surveys or leaving reviews. For example, you could send post-visit text messages inviting customers to participate in a feedback survey with a link provided. This is a powerful way to make customers feel valued. You can take it a step further by offering a reward for completion and texting a thank you with redemption details.

Stop Chasing, Start Connecting

Building a loyal customer base is the cornerstone of any successful restaurant. Text marketing offers a powerful tool for connecting with patrons on a personal level, fostering trust and loyalty.  

Olive + Leo empowers you to leverage the magic of text marketing with customizable packages designed to meet your specific needs. Explore our platform today and discover how text marketing can transform your “first-timers” into your most dedicated “forever fans.”

How to Automate Text Marketing Messages

girl in white tshirt looking at her phone while walking outside

Running a restaurant is a whirlwind. Between whipping up delicious dishes, keeping up with inventory, and making sure customers are happy, there’s barely a moment to breathe, let alone plan elaborate marketing campaigns. And yet, the reality remains: engaging with your customers and promoting your business is crucial for success.

But here’s the secret: effective marketing doesn’t have to waste your precious hours. That’s where text marketing comes in. It’s a powerful tool for building relationships, driving repeat business, and boosting sales, all while being budget-friendly and easy to manage. But with limited time, manually crafting and sending text campaigns might feel overwhelming. That’s where the real magic happens: automation.

At Olive + Leo, we built our text marketing and digital engagement platform specifically for the hospitality industry, because we believe you deserve that kind of magic. With our automated text campaigns, you can connect with customers on a personal level without getting bogged down in constant management. In this article, we’ll explore the magic of automating text campaigns and how it can revolutionize your restaurant’s marketing strategy.

5 Automated Text Campaign Ideas 

Ready to free up your time with the power of text marketing? Here are just a few automated text campaign ideas to get you started:

1. Welcome them with an offer they can’t refuse

When someone joins your text list or makes their first purchase, send a personalized welcome message that makes them feel special. Make sure this offer is compelling so they are grateful for signing up for the program and incentivized to use it. This sets a positive tone and starts building a relationship from the get-go.

2. Celebrate special occasions 

Anniversaries are a golden opportunity to show customers you care. Send an automated text with a personalized discount or reward on the anniversary of their first visit or sign-up. It’s a small gesture that makes a big difference, reminding them why they love your restaurant and encouraging another visit.

3. Send them a birthday surprise 

Birthdays are all about feeling special. Make your customers’ day with an automated text with birthday wishes and an exclusive offer. This personalized touch shows you remember them, boosting their mood and loyalty.

Pro Tip: Sending the special offer a few days before their birthday will help your message stand out if they get inundated with texts on their special day.

4. Rekindle the spark

Customers who haven’t visited in a while might need a little nudge. With the Olive + Leo platform, you can send an automated text after a period of inactivity (like 30 days) with a special offer or friendly reminder of your delicious food. It’s a gentle way to bring them back and reignite their love for your restaurant.

5. Make a simple online review request

For hospitality businesses, online reviews are marketing gold. Positive reviews can influence potential customers and boost your credibility. Leverage the power of automated texts to request reviews after a positive experience. For example, after a second visit, send a message asking for their feedback on Google or Yelp. This increases your chances of getting glowing reviews that attract even more customers.

The Recipe for Success: Automated Text Campaign Best Practices

Automation is only helpful if your text marketing campaigns are effective. Here are some best practices to make your automated campaigns truly shine:

  • Timing is Key

    Don’t overwhelm customers with too many texts—find the sweet spot for staying connected without being intrusive. For example, sending a text an hour after a visit can be more impactful than sending an immediate one, which may be easier to ignore.

  • Personalize like a Pro

    When possible, use the customer’s name and offer relevant deals based on their engagement or purchase history. This creates a human connection that resonates more than generic messages.

  • Humor is Your Friend

    Marketing texts don’t have to be dry. Infuse them with your brand voice, which may be funny, inspirational, or friendly. People appreciate a human touch.

  • Visuals Grab Attention

    Animated GIFs and images grab attention and leave a lasting impression. Use them to showcase your delicious dishes and vibrant atmosphere.

  • Track & Analyze

    Just like your signature dish, your campaigns need fine-tuning. As you implement campaigns, be sure to monitor metrics to see what’s working and adjust accordingly.

Unlock the Magic with Olive + Leo

At Olive + Leo, we believe that effective marketing doesn’t have to be time-consuming. By automating your text campaigns, you can unlock the magic of personalized engagement while freeing up valuable time to focus on what you do best—running your restaurant. Explore our platform, discover the package that’s right for you, and start reaping the rewards of automated text marketing today.

How to Turn Customer Reviews into Solid Marketing Content

close up of hands getting ready to type on a white keyboard

If you have raving fans, it’s great to let potential leads know it! Customers take online reviews seriously, and the role it plays in consumer decisions continues to increase. Research from BrightLocal shows just how seriously potential customers take online reviews. 84% percent of buyers give online reviews the same weight in decision making as personal referrals. 

Online reviews are now starting to eclipse referral-based business. as Northwestern University finds that consumers are 270% more likely to buy a product or service with 5 positive reviews than a product or service with no reviews. That’s hugely significant! In order to harness the power of these reviews, use them in your marketing efforts to increase consumer trust and boost sales.

Use Customer Reviews To Enhance Your Website SEO 

One of the strongest ways to use positive reviews is by increasing the SEO score of your website based on those positive reviews. There are a few ways to do this. The first is simply to embed the code for Google Reviews in your website so that Google Reviews. This is a good option if the majority of your reviews are positive. Google’s search engine algorithm will recognize the embedded rating system and is likely to rank your site more highly as a result. 

The second way to utilize customer reviews is to include them on your website, either by using parts of the review text directly or by including graphics of the positive reviews on your site. (Don’t forget to change the alt text on these images so that they’re search-engine friendly) Google and Yelp hold a high trust cache with consumers, and citing positive reviews can help your brand leverage that trust. 

Use Customer Reviews on Social Media 

You may also have the advantage of keeping an eye on videos or posts that tag your brand. If you have a social media manager, have them proactively research any posts where your product or service is tagged. They can use tools like BuzzSumo or Mention to help with this. If they come across a positive review, have your team DM the content creator to ask if the review can be used in marketing materials. 

Some reviewers are happy to offer their thoughts gratis, while others work as part or full-time product influencers. Both types of social media reviews can be helpful to weave into your marketing strategy. Screenshots and re-posts of positive reviews can build brand awareness on multiple platforms.  

Let Negative Reviews Spur Institutional Changes

Online reviews through Yelp and Google provide business owners with what they say they want most: anonymous feedback close to the point of sale. But business owners are also human, and harsh or negative reviews can leave a bad taste in anyone’s mouth. After you take some time to feel frustrated, see if you can find the kernel of truth in their words. The frustration may be about an inefficient process, an unhelpful team member, or a product flaw. 

Rather than stew in frustration, take specific actions to address the issue. However, don’t revamp your entire process over one negative review. Reflect and ask your employees if they’ve also seen evidence of what the review mentions. If it comes up several times, it may be time to analyze and address a potential pain point. 

Be Proactive about Interacting With Reviews 

If you don’t have a Google My Business account or haven’t updated the account you have, you could be missing out on major opportunities to shape how your brand is perceived. One of these ways is by interacting with online reviews. Brands that interact with customers on Google cultivate a reputation for being proactive and conscientious. Plus, interacting with reviews often can allow you to pinpoint and identify possible customer needs or frustrations before they go viral. 

In the world of online reviews, negative feedback begets negative feedback. It shouldn’t go unaddressed, or you may see more of it. Instead, if you see a review that’s unfair or lacking context, you can provide that in your response to an online review. You can also offer to make it right, which goes a long way in securing customer loyalty. It says to potential buyers, “Even if we make a mistake, we will correct our error.”

Seven Strategies Your Email Newsletter Could Use

top down view of a women on her laptop drinking tea

When it comes to the basic “blocking and tackling” of effective marketing, email newsletters are on the starting line. After all, 81% of B2B businesses name newsletters as their top content marketing strategy. However, the popularity of newsletters often makes it one of the most difficult tactics to deploy. It’s important for every business to consider how their newsletter is going to stand out in the crowded inboxes of their audience. 

3 Benefits of Email Newsletters for Marketing

Before we dive into the strategies for developing an effective newsletter, here are just a few important factors to consider:

1. Newsletters provide a way to educate current and prospective customers.

An effective email newsletter is informative and relevant. It should appeal directly to the subscriber’s interests and cover the topics from the industry. Because of this, newsletters provide your audience with a better understanding and knowledge of your brand in a way that is helpful. 

2. Newsletters help you keep leads warm.

Not everyone who visits your website or submits their email address is ready to buy. Newsletters can be a great way to keep potential customers engaged and informed until they’re ready to make the decision to buy. 

3. Newsletters can enhance your brand reputation and highlight your expertise.

Newsletters also provide a way to establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry and build expertise. By sharing relevant industry news and providing perspective on important topics for your audience in your newsletter, you become a trusted voice for them. 

7 Effective Strategies for Email Newsletters

So how do you create an engaging newsletter that creates momentum for your marketing efforts? Here are seven strategies to consider:

1. Choose an Email Software that Works for Your Brand

There are many email service providers out there on the market and choosing the right one is not easy. While we’ve used several survey platforms to send newsletters for our clients, our team likes the features and functionality that Campaign Monitor provides. The key is to find software that can meet your requirements and can guarantee both high deliverability and quality of your emails.

2. Set the Right Expectations by Letting People Know What to Expect from Your Newsletter

Because of how many emails are sent daily, people are more and more reluctant to share their email addresses. Whenever you’re asking people to sign up for your newsletter, it’s helpful to answer the question “What’s in it for me?”

Helping people recognize the value of subscribing to your newsletter and setting expectations for how you will communicate with them goes a long way in maximizing the ROI of your campaigns. 

3. Use a Clean and Consistent Template

You want to make sure your newsletters are skimmable and easy to read. Whether you use an out-of-the-box template or get one created especially for your brand, using a consistent design will help your brand achieve a layer of ​​cohesiveness and flow.  

4. Make Sure Your Subject Line is Compelling

You only get one chance to make a great first impression with your subject line. According to research, 64% of readers make the decision to open an email based on the subject line alone. Here are a few different subject lines you can use to elevate your email newsletters.  

5. Consider Adding an Emoji to Your Subject Line

At Green Apple, we’ve found emojis help our clients’ newsletters stand out in a crowded inbox. One study analyzed over 9K email campaigns on mobile and found that subject lines that included emojis increased email open rates by 1,071% on Android and by 662% on iOS.

6. Make Your Newsletter Helpful & Informational More than Sales-Driven

Newsletters are better for cultivating customer loyalty and brand equity than they are for hard selling. When it comes to the content you create, it’s important to embrace the mindset of “always be helping.” One way to integrate this into your newsletters is the 90/10 rule: 90% informational content, 10% sales material. With the right balance, less is more and the educational material will lead to more sales than product copy.

7. Continually Analyze & Test to Find What Works

As with any marketing tactic, it’s important to constantly test and analyze your newsletter to see what works. You want to track the metrics that indicate whether or not your newsletter is working and test new ideas along the way. This includes testing out different strategies for send date, layout & design, calls-to-action, etc. 

Email newsletters might be something we’re all familiar with, but it can challenging to create a successful one for your own brand. We hope these insights and strategies help you develop a newsletter that delights subscribers and creates momentum for your marketing efforts.


The Marketing Sandbox: How to Discover Your Next Best Marketing Tactic

mapping out a process on a piece of paper.

The beginning of the year is always an exciting time to dream about future possibilities. It seems like the marketing world is buzzing with the latest trends and promising strategies this time of year. However, the flurry of new marketing trends can often be overwhelming, making it challenging for businesses to decide where to invest their resources. With a constant influx of new tools and ideas, it’s easy to feel paralyzed by the decision of which new tactics to implement. 

But what if there was a space where you could experiment, innovate, and stumble without jeopardizing your entire marketing campaign for the year? We like to call this space the “marketing sandbox.” 

What is a Marketing Sandbox?

Remember the childhood joy of building sand castles and digging for buried treasure in a sandbox on the playground? Children enjoy a sense of endless possibilities and the freedom to experiment and create without fear of consequences—that’s the essence of the marketing sandbox.

Just like the childhood toy, a marketing sandbox provides a controlled environment to test new ideas, explore emerging trends, and discover what truly resonates with your audience. It’s not about reinventing your entire marketing strategy; it’s about calculated exploration within a defined framework to find your next great marketing idea.

Tips for Incorporating the Marketing Sandbox Concept

So, how do you build your marketing sandbox? Here are a few tips to get you started:

Explore Emerging Trends in Marketing

The first step to finding your next great marketing tactic is to be aware of the latest trends and technologies shaping the marketing landscape. Whether you’re learning about user-generated content, social commerce, or social listening, staying informed will equip your team with the insights needed to innovate effectively.

Allocate a Portion of the Budget for Experimentation

One benefit of this approach is that it doesn’t require a massive investment. We often encourage businesses to set aside a dedicated budget for sandbox initiatives as they think strategically about their marketing budget for the year. Companies can mitigate risks by earmarking funds specifically for experimentation while fostering a culture that encourages innovation.

Encourage Cross-Collaboration Across Departments 

To ensure your marketing tactics are aligned with your overall business objectives, you’ll want to break down silos and encourage collaboration across different departments. By fostering an environment where teams can share ideas, you can leverage diverse perspectives to drive innovation and create cohesive marketing strategies.

Fire Bullets, Not Cannonballs

This is a principle from popular leadership author Jim Collins. Instead of investing significant time, energy, and resources into large-scale initiatives, start by launching smaller, low-risk experiments within the marketing sandbox. By firing “bullets” (targeted, low-cost tests), businesses can gauge the effectiveness of new tactics, gather valuable insights, and refine strategies based on real-world feedback before they invest in sweeping changes.  

Marketing Sandbox Ideas for Various Industries

Now that you have an understanding of the best practices, let’s see how the sandbox can work in action across different industries:

User-Generated Content for B2C Businesses: User-generated content empowers B2C businesses to foster authentic connections and drive engagement by showcasing real-life experiences and testimonials from satisfied customers. Encourage customers to share their experiences and use this content on your platforms to showcase authentic testimonials and attract potential customers.

Text Marketing for Local Restaurants:  Customer loyalty is the lifeblood of many local restaurants. With an impressive open rate and the ability to deliver timely, targeted messages, text marketing offers a low-cost yet impactful solution for hospitality businesses looking to connect with their guests.

Affiliate Marketing for E-Commerce: By leveraging the trusted voices of affiliates, e-commerce businesses can unlock exponential reach, ignite audience passion, and fuel a sales engine that hums long after traditional campaigns fade. As you look at the year ahead, consider how to partner with influencers or niche websites to promote your products. 

Educational Content Marketing for Healthcare Brands: Empowering patients with educational content marketing builds trust, fosters brand loyalty, and positions healthcare brands as valuable partners in proactive health journeys. As an expert, put your knowledge to good use by creating informative content that addresses common health concerns or topics relevant to your specialty. Share this content on your website and social media platforms to position your practice as a trusted source of valuable information.

By exploring these low-cost marketing tactics, businesses can effectively engage their target audience, drive growth, and achieve their marketing objectives without breaking the bank.

Harness the Power of Innovation To Unleash Customer Loyalty

The “marketing sandbox” offers a refreshing approach to innovation and experimentation in a complex marketing landscape. By embracing this concept, businesses can foster a culture that values creativity, rewards innovation, and drives meaningful results. 

With Olive + Leo, you can create a multi-channel marketing experience that leaves your customers craving more. Explore our plans and packages to discover our wide range of effective, affordable customer engagement tools. You can choose between DIY options and fully managed marketing campaigns based on your capacity and needs.

A B2C Guide to Marketing Automation

four women talking together with coffee at a restaurant

As a brand, connecting with your audience is crucial. To connect with your audience effectively, you need to know what content resonates with your target demographic, their sales cycle, and what they value most about your product or service. This type of in-depth research can be difficult to reproduce at scale, but marketing automation can be a powerful tool. Marketing automation can help you identify your potential customers’ needs, establish several touchpoints on their sales journeys, and bring more sales to completion. 

What is Marketing Automation?

Marketing automation refers to a set of tools and processes that are used to communicate with existing leads, bringing them closer to the point of buying. Any time a customer adds an item to a cart, leaves the page, and later receives an email with “Forgot Something?” in the subject line, that’s marketing automation at work. Setting up a series of processes, emails, reminders, or follow-ups can help you increase communication with your customers without taking additional time or requiring you to hire new talent. Instead, marketing automation uses well-designed processes to help you discover potential customers, replicate high-performing practices, and encourage repeat purchasing behaviors. 

Marketing Automation Saves You Time and Overhead

Marketing automation has numerous benefits, but the most important is the time you save by streamlining your sales cycle. Rather than spending hours identifying and contacting qualified leads individually, it gives you the capacity to reach out to leads at the ideal point in their purchasing journey. There’s no need to manually import customers into your database. Instead, an automated marketing tool can identify and label leads for you by tracking a user’s interaction with your brand. 

Marketing Automation Can Strengthen Your CRM

Marketing automation also increases the power of your customer relationship management (CRM) tool, such as Salesforce. In tandem with a CRM, marketing automation can help you build a customized onboarding process and follow-up communication for clients to strengthen your customer relationships. Because automation analyzes your audience’s actions, it actively nurtures your leads by personalizing their experience and automatically segmenting their journeys. Marketing automation can monitor behaviors such as clicks, site visits, or purchase histories and provide your leads with information and opportunities that are customized to a customer’s needs. You’ll see improved conversion rates, and you’ll be able to assess and improve your sales pipeline with actionable data. 

How You Can Implement Marketing Automation

While marketing automation can be immensely effective, you need a strong foundation to see powerful results. This includes a reliable contact list, an up-to-date website, active email marketing tactics, and social media management. 

Once you’ve established reliable groundwork, you need to indicate your specific goals. Your goals may include an increase in subscribers, clicks, sales, or page likes. After you’ve determined your goal, decide what platform you want to use. There are several MA systems available, but consider your preferred budget, ease of use, type of marketing automation, and customer service when deciding which one is best for you. Finally, you should determine if you want to implement alone or hire a professional marketing company to begin your process. 

Iterate and Improve Your Marketing Automation 

To continue achieving marketing automation goals, you should pair marketing automation with inbound marketing and CRM tools to increase its reach. You’ll also want to include other team members in setting up and improving your processes. Sharing reports with senior executives and data with your sales team will allow you to collect and implement their insights into the sales funnel. With the feedback and assistance from various departments, plus the results from your marketing automation tool, you can optimize your content, messaging, and strategies to retain your current customers and attract more.

Explore the Olive + Leo Platform

Olive + Leo offers a robust platform designed to foster genuine connections, drive repeat business, and ultimately boost your bottom line. Explore our platform, discover the power of personalized engagement, and see how Olive + Leo can help you transform your customer loyalty program into a thriving community.

Ready to dive deeper? Check out our flexible packages or sign up for a personalized demo to see how Olive + Leo can unleash your customer loyalty potential.

6 Ways to Involve Your Employees in Marketing Your Business

a group of smiling coworkers looking at a mac computer together.

In today’s world, everything is marketing. Subsequently, every area of your business has valuable insights or perspectives that could be beneficial for your marketing efforts. Taking the time to get your employees involved in marketing creates opportunities to connect with your audience on a human level. 

While your employees might not be directly responsible for your marketing goals, they can still play a valuable role in enhancing brand perception, improving lead generation, and creating meaningful connections with your customers. 

Here are seven effective yet fairly simple ways to get your employees involved in your marketing efforts: 

1. Invite Your Employees into Marketing Conversations

No one knows the challenges that your audience faces every day more than your sales and customer success teams. Knowing these challenges—and how you’re uniquely equipped to help them—is essential for sharing a clear and compelling marketing message.

There are several important questions your marketing team can ask sales and customer service to help improve your marketing copy and connect with your audience. 

  • What problems do we solve for our customers? What are we better at than anyone in our industry?
    • Knowing the challenges your customers face—and how you’re uniquely equipped to help them—is essential for sharing a clear and compelling marketing message. Positioning your brand as an industry leader isn’t easy. It takes a lot of work to discover the thing that you’re truly best at doing. But from a marketing perspective, discovering that “thing” becomes the product or service you can invest the most time, energy, and resources promoting.
  • Where have we helped solve a major challenge in the past?
    • Sharing success stories is one of the most effective ways to create demand for your products or services. Your employees might know a customer who experienced a breakthrough because of your product or service. Asking your employees to share their stories could help you understand the solutions your customers are looking for. 
  • What are the most common questions you get during the sales process?
    • Almost every business has a list of common questions that are asked by prospective customers. But what if your marketing team could support business development by addressing many of these questions beforehand? Encourage your marketing team to codify and create responses for the frequently asked questions asked during the sales process.
2. Implement a Way to Capture Positive Feedback and Reviews 

Customer reviews are powerful marketing tools. Research shows that customers take reviews seriously, valuing them above almost any other source of information when they’re ready to make a purchase. It’s essential to have a system in place to capture reviews so that you can share them with potential customers. Implement a customer survey platform or provide your customer relations team with an email template they can use to ask permission to share a positive review. 

3. Share your Team’s Expertise through Your Content Marketing.

If you offer a service, your team likely has knowledge and experience that can be beneficial for your audience. Finding ways to empower your employees to create content for your marketing can be a powerful way to position your business as a thought leader in the industry and earn the trust of your audience. Even a photo of your merchandise or a video of your employees enjoying their work can be used on social media or in a text messaging campaign. 

4. Build an Employee Advocacy Plan

Your employees can also be your best promoters. This is one reason why many businesses have started creating a dedicated employee advocacy program within their organization. Helping employees understand their role as brand ambassadors can create tremendous dividends for the overall health and success of your company. 

5. Make it Easy and Compelling for Employees to Share Social Content

Your marketing team spends a lot of time, energy, and effort to keep your social media platforms running. And yet, most employees don’t recognize how helpful and powerful it can be to simply share the content that you’ve created. While there are many reasons why people might not share your social content, the best way to overcome all of them is to create social content that your employees actually want to share.

6. Acknowledge Social Responsibility or Volunteerism In Your Marketing

Many companies have a corporate social responsibility platform or promote ways for employees to give back to the community throughout the year. Promoting these activities through your marketing channels can be a great way to highlight your employees and create meaningful connections with your audience. When you share content that is focused on your team, employees are also likely to share the event and the content with their family and friends, generating goodwill and increased brand exposure.  

We hope these ideas create an opportunity to integrate your marketing into your company rather than keeping it siloed. Finding ways to get employees involved in your marketing can be a powerful way to leverage your company’s community to create deeper, more personal connections with your audience and increase customer loyalty. 

Explore the Olive + Leo Platform

With Olive + Leo, you can create a multi-channel marketing experience that leaves your customers craving more. Don’t just serve up a custome loyalty program or text marketing campaigns in a vacuum. Instead, combine them for a winning recipe that guarantees both online buzz and real-world results.

Ready to get started? Explore our plans and packages to discover our wide range of effective, affordable customer engagement tools. You can choose between DIY options and fully managed marketing campaigns based on your capacity and needs

Future-Proofing Your Restaurant: How to Thrive with Mobile Marketing in the Post-Pandemic Era

an empty restaurant with white linens and potted plants lining one side of the restaurant

The restaurant industry has faced unprecedented challenges in recent years, and the post-pandemic landscape has not been much easier to navigate. Labor shortages, rising food costs, and evolving customer preferences require agility, creativity, and adaptability. But amidst the uncertainty, one thing remains clear: customer engagement is more important than ever before. 

We understand the difficulties restaurants face. We’ve also seen how digital engagement— especially through text marketing—has become an essential tool for success in the post-pandemic era.

Why Text Marketing is Your Restaurant’s Secret Ingredient

So why is text marketing such a powerful tool for restaurants? Let’s dive into the reasons: 

  • Unmatched Engagement

Did you know that 98% of text messages are opened within minutes of being received? (Source) Compared to emails with an average open rate of 20%, the effectiveness of text marketing is undeniable. This direct, immediate connection allows you to reach your customers when they’re most receptive, maximizing the impact of your promotions and announcements.

  • Customer-Prefered Choice

Studies show that 91% of consumers are interested in receiving texts from businesses, and that number will likely increase over the next few years as social platforms change and Gen Z plays an even bigger role in the economy. By offering opt-in text marketing through Olive + Leo’s in-store kiosk, you’re meeting your customers where they are and providing them with a communication channel they appreciate.

  • Timely and Targeted Communication

The beauty of text marketing lies in its flexibility and immediacy. Your restaurant can send targeted promotions based on time of day, customer preferences, or even weather conditions. Need to boost foot traffic during a slow afternoon? Send a text message with a happy hour offer! Caught in a snowstorm? Notify loyal customers about your adjusted hours via text.

  • Valuable Customer Insights 

Text marketing isn’t just about sending messages; it’s about gathering valuable customer data that can inform future business decisions. With the Olive + Leo platform, you can track engagement rates, analyze campaign performance, and understand customer preferences. This data empowers you to personalize your offerings, improve your services, and create even more effective marketing campaigns.

  • Leveling the Playing Field for Local Restaurants 

In a competitive market dominated by national chains, text loyalty programs offer a way for smaller businesses to compete. In many ways, text marketing allows you to show your personal touch, offer exclusive rewards, and build a loyal following that prioritizes your unique offerings over generic chains.

  • Proven, Cost-Effective Solution

Unlike traditional advertising channels, text marketing offers a low barrier to entry and high ROI. A recent study found that text message marketing subscribers visit stores 44% more frequently than non-subscribers. And once a consumer joins a restaurant’s text messaging program, the guest’s spend increases by 23%. This is much higher than traditional marketing channels (which are also harder to measure). 

  • More Convenient than Traditional Loyalty Programs

Traditional punch cards are relics of the past. They offer no data, are easily lost, and lack the convenience and engagement of modern text-based loyalty programs. With Olive + Leo, customers can easily sign up, check in, and redeem rewards through our user-friendly platform, creating a seamless and rewarding experience.

​​Ready to Future-Proof Your Restaurant?

Olive + Leo offers a comprehensive toolbox for mobile marketing success designed explicitly for the hospitality industry.

Explore the Olive + Leo platform, learn more about our tiered pricing options, or schedule a personalized demo with one of our team members. Together, we can help you build a loyal customer base and ensure your restaurant continues to sizzle in the years to come.