CRM plays a significant role in restaurant management system by getting repeat orders. It helps retain customers as well as build new ones via effective campaigning through captivating emails and SMS. 

Imagine having received a discount from your favourite Sneakers store. How would you feel? Pretty amazing, right? Would you revisit that store? Hell yes! 

A restaurant works exactly like that.

Understanding CRM

Customer Relationship Management, often termed as CRM, is the process in which you reach out to your customers and try to convince them into coming to your restaurant again. It is an essential part of a restaurant marketing strategy. It’s a process by which you engage customers through a series of texts and emails giving out special discounts offers, coupons and more. Or simply keeping them excited about your restaurant.

As you can imagine, your customer orders from and eats at many restaurants. Why should she/he remember you over the others?

CRM helps you stay top of mind and relevant to your customers, so that next time they decide to order in or go out for a meal, they think of you.

Acquiring new customers often costs more than encouraging repeat ones. That is precisely why you need a solid CRM for your restaurant with attractive new campaigns. Your restaurant must target existing customers at the right time with the right content.

The Big Question - Where to begin?

As restaurant owners, you might find yourself stuck when it comes to creating a concrete CRM campaign. 

In order to initiate a successful campaign you need to clearly outline your goals. It’s not all that complicated. 

Here’s a list of common CRM goals that you can use:

1. Brand recall
2. Offer or event promotion
3. Leveraging a trending topic
4. Customer win-back
5. Increasing loyalty
6. Increasing the average basket size or order value

You can begin your campaign by informing your customers about anything new that’s happening at your restaurant, for example, say, running special offers on selected menu items during the cricket season or introducing a new dish on special days. Customers are likely to visit your restaurant more during these occasions. Having themed concepts for your CRM campaigns based on current trends will greatly help in attracting new customers to your restaurant, giving them a reason to celebrate with you. 

As far as the dormant customers are concerned, you can catch their attention using vivid offers and modify the loyalty programs that your customers have opted for. Remind them how can they utilise these programs. Creating jazzy ‘Buy one get one free’ offers will help increase the average basket size, another way of building engaging campaigns. 

As and when your objectives are defined, you can move ahead in creating an impactful CRM campaign. Let’s now look at some basics that will kick-start your CRM. 

Ways of creating CRM campaigns 

1. Once the CRM campaign goal is structured, you need to focus on the relevant audience for the campaign. Your restaurant CRM tool makes this job easier for you by grouping customers into repeat, dormant and other activities like order size, time, etc. This way, right customers can be targeted based on their insights provided by these tools. And campaigns can be created accordingly.
2. Creating significant content that your customers can relate to is extremely important. You have to be conspicuous apart from being witty and meaningful. Adding catchy phrases is a great idea to earn the attention of your customers. After all, what’s life without a little humor?
3. All your efforts will go in vain if you don’t know when to reach out to your customers. Time your CRM campaigns in such a manner that they reach customers at the appropriate time. Catching them at the right time would be wonderful for your restaurant. 
4. The emails and messages that you send are very crucial in CRM campaigns. So, email it right! SMS will have a limited number of characters, for obvious reasons. Therefore, make sure you convey the main message, name of your restaurant, offers and other links, all in that word limit. Emails can be detailed. But that doesn’t mean you send long paragraphs which could be boring to read. The key is to be concise and stick to the main objective of your CRM campaign.
5. It doesn’t end here. Effective CRM requires you to be frequent with your restaurant campaigns. Maintain the customer relationship by sending emails and SMS regularly. Customers receive tons of messages everyday. It’s your job to stand out with your campaigns and compel them to come to your restaurant instead.
6. Work on data provided by CRM tools. There is a sufficient amount of data given out by these tools. This will help in revising your strategies for certain campaigns if required or investing more time and effort in others. Studying these reports inside out will eventually lead to better results in future campaigns. In short, it allows you to channelise your efforts into areas that yield better results.

Build a unique experience 

Remember, the restaurant market is highly competitive. The CRM tools available today have to be used to their full potential in order to achieve higher number of repeat orders. You need to constantly work on things that make your restaurant different than the rest. Customers look forward to experiencing quirky new things each time they visit a restaurant. Make sure you provide the same with the help of interesting CRM campaigns.