Over the years, the food industry has changed drastically with the help of new social norms, technology, and marketing. With more restaurants offering delivery services, it’s now the norm for customers; dining has become an occasional activity.
Gloria Food’s ordering statistics reports that 86% of US adults get food delivered to their front door at least once a month. Not to mention that the market for online food delivery grow by 20% in 2018 and estimated to keep on growing as restaurants embrace new forms of tech and services, including collaborating with food delivery services.
This means good and bad news; it’s good news because your delivery service is in high demand by customers and restaurants. It’s also bad because more delivery services are trying to capture that demand.
Here’s an insider guide on how to expertly market your food delivery services and out-do your competitors on and offline.
1. Keep Improving the Quality of your Service
Most businesses think that the quality of their service is the defining factor between them and the competition. It’s 50/50.
Quality service will always attract customers, but continuously improving your service will allow you to keep your customers. Much more than fast delivery here are three services your food delivery business should continually improve whether you’re a start-up or a delivery veteran:
1. Excellent Customer Service: This service is a crucial feature your business should master if you haven’t already. Remember that your customer service rep and delivery employees are the face of the company, what they do and say to customers from initial inquiries to delivered order can be the difference between an angry or life long customer.
2. Fast delivery: About 27% of people who order food are willing to pay extra for fast delivery. People aren’t likely to use a delivery service that’s slow, regardless of the cost. Find a way to improve your delivery speed by hiring more employees or mapping out better routes.
3. Tracking & Updates: Next to customer service, be sure to give updates and tracking when food is late, an overflow of orders, or a lost delivery man in need of directions. Ask for emails, or phone numbers to update customers on their food delivery when needed.
2. Create a Website for Your Delivery Business
Digital Marketing Specialist Leland Dieno once said, “Your website is the center of your digital eco-system, as a brick and mortar location, the experience matters once a customer enters, just as much as the perception they have of you before they walk through the door.”
It’s become second nature for businesses to host a website to represent their online presence. Without it, local and global customers won’t be able to interact with your brand as effectively on social media or via email.
Website Example: Foodora
You need to have a website, and if you already have a website, take it out of the early 2000s and upgrade it for millennial customers and modern-day marketing.
Here are the 10 Best Website Builders Ranked to help you get started, no coding required, create a fantastic website in under an hour!
3. Market Your Deliver Service with Social Media
Social media marketing is no longer an option; your business can either join it or get left behind. Social media isn’t just about selfies anymore. It’s where your customers live, a place to gain sales, and solidify your brand as the go-to brand for food delivery.
Around 40% of consumers learn about food online more than ever before. Since your delivery service is in the business of food, create content focused on food. Brandon Gaille found that 72% of food pics on social media are of the main dish. People are willing to share, like, and discover pictures of food.
? Your food is on the way. ? https://t.co/tnYN05tmlQ
— Uber Eats (@UberEats) November 8, 2019
When people see a brand active on social media, they’re most likely to interact and make a purchase later down the line. If they love your content, you can start creating a community of loyal brand customers who can market your brand on and offline.
Pick a social media platform and start publishing content on your profile.
Start with the big guns!
There’s no better place to start Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Finances Online has named these platforms as the future battlefield to gain customers’ trust.
instagram Example: UberEats
Here are some detailed guides to get started on your social media journey:
- 45 Best Facebook Business Page Tips, Tricks, and Optimizations
- InstagramHow to Promote Your Business On Instagram: 21 Techniques, Tips & Strategies
- 60 Small Tricks to Get More Twitter Followers and Grow Your Following
- Social Media Marketing Plan: An 11-Step Template
4. Create a Mobile App
A mobile app can open a whole door of opportunities for your food delivery service. The business insider found that orders placed via smartphone and mobile apps will become a $38 billion industry by 2020. People now see apps as a tool or extension of business for them to easily connect to services with just a tap of a finger.
Mobile apps can encourage first-time users to be lifelong customers as well, giving the accessibility to order whenever and where ever they’d like, without having to go straight to your website. It’s simple math: the less work it to contact you, the more order you’ll get.
First, you’ll invite and host a list of restaurants on your app to encourage people to place orders. You’ll have to grab local and popular restaurants.
You’ll need a coder or UX Designer to create your app and make it functional. This project is a bit more complicated than a do-it-yourself website. But I won’t leave you in the dark, Spaceo Tech has a detailed guide on How to Make a Food Delivery App like GrubHub and Postmates? (Features + Estimated Cost + Tips)
5. Collaborate with Food Bloggers & Influencers
Food Bloggers and influencers can be your best referrals or your worst enemies. As we know, people take their food (recommendations) very seriously, delivery no less.
Take A-list celebrity Christine Teigan and her love for Postmate food delivery, and from her tweets, her fans seem to love it too.
Man. My postmate went all the way into the grove to get me a wetzel’s pretzel. 1000 stars, didn’t think that would get accepted. Like asking for a dole whip from Disneyland
— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) October 23, 2019
Not all of us can get this much love from an A-list celebrity, so we have to settle for influencers and food bloggers, who are arguably just as good.
Reach out to prominent influencers and provide them with a discount or offer in exchange for a review or post. Be warned most influencers with a high count of followers, or have been in the game long enough will ask for a fee. Afterall, Influencer marketing is a multi-billion dollar industry.
Here are some amazing influencer guides to get you started on your first Influencer campaign:
- The Essential Guide to Getting Started with Influencer Marketing
- Demystifying Your First Influencer Marketing Campaign
- How to Write the Perfect Influencer Outreach Email Template
6. Print and Handout Business cards or Fliers
A business card or a flyer goes a long way when you’re trying to market your delivery service. With tools like Canva and Venngage, you can create business cards, flyers, and posters without the hassle of waiting on a graphic designer. You can even use a QR Code Generator to add QR codes on your business cards, flyers and posters and make it easy for your customers to reach you online and stay connected with you.
Ask employees to hand out business cards or flyers when making deliveries or pass them to local businesses in your area.
7. Attend or Sponsor a Local Food Event
Once you’ve networked with a few restaurants that you provide delivery, reach out to them and host a local food event. Set up booths for each restaurant, provide free food samples, and co-promote the event to draw in a large crowd.
If planning an event is too far out of budget or too much to plan, then try attending a food festival or event. Set up a booth and hand out goodie bags, flyers with discounts, and ask persons to follow you on social media.
8. Do More Restaurant and Food Establishment Outreach
In 2018, there were 13,251 new restaurants in the US, according to Statista. With a 2% increase in comparison with the previous year, the restaurant industry reached 660,755 businesses. It’s expected to grow each year.
What does this mean?
It means that your food delivery service has more restaurants to add to its outreach list. But what if you already a decent amount of restaurants?
When it comes to ordering food, about 54% of customers turn to an app with a specific restaurant in mind. The more options customers have to order from the more orders your food delivery company can get, the more sales, and the more restaurants will want to work with you.
Make a list of new restaurants or local favorites and start from there. You can also place ads on social media asking food vendors to consider signing up for your app or using your services.
Bloomers Vegan Donuts
9. Offer Deals for Local Workspaces and Business
Find local workspace, co-working hubs, and business and reach out to them with food delivery offers for their employees.
I can personally attest that lunchtime is one of the most cherished times of the day for any employee, next to going home! Your food delivery business would be solving two dilemmas that employees face daily:
Where should we get lunch?
Do we have the time to get lunch?
Offering your services allows them to have the flexibility to choose their favorite and saving them the trail of running back and forth between places.
Offer discounts on delivery for overs over a specific number, so each business is encouraged to send out large orders your way. You can also create contracts for an extended time to maintain the relationship. This allows you to have a steady revenue you can depend on overtime.
Plus, if restaurants see you delivering large orders to companies on their behalf, they may want to do more business with you in the future.
10. Promote Your Services with Creative Advertising
It’s time to think out the box and grab a pair of box cutters to match. Creative advertising for your brand can help your brand to not only get noticed but also go viral.
You don’t need to be a genius to do creative marketing for your food delivery brand, just a will to try something new and invest it in. Here are three ways you can creatively market your food delivery company.
Traditional marketing still holds a candle to social media marketing. Invest a bit in your brands with billboards and out of home marketing.
According to Lyfe Marketing, social media ad spent will outgrow TV ad spend in the near future.
Social media plays a dominant role in customers’ life, so you’ll need to consider an ad budget if you want to reap the full rewards of using it to drive business for your company. Use this guide on How to Use Facebook Ads for Local Businesses (And Why They Work)
Start adding your name and logo to your employee’s uniform, delivery bags, bikes, and hats. Promotional branding can bring your company to mind when people see your branding on the go.
11. Offer Discounts and Deals
About 93% of shoppers use a coupon or discount code throughout the year.
Despite what people think discounts actually make you more money in the long run. Volusion has broken down to a science with their article “Leveraging the Psychology of Discounts to Make More Money.”
The key is to avoid discount fatigue so that customers become accustomed to paying full price for orders. Create a discount stratgey to make your services more enticing to your shoppers. Try to offer discounts for first-time users or during the holidays.
12. Offer Loyalty Points & Cashback
An alternative to discounts and deals are loyalty points and cashback deals. Nrn found that 45% of consumers agree that mobile ordering and loyalty programs make them more likely to do business with a store often.
Postmate and Grubhub have profited from their loyalty program, asking customers to opt-in for free delivery and orders by adding up points over time.
If you want your loyalty program to take off, you have to sit down and consider rewards worth reaping in the long run since customers will only benefit from it over time.
Check out Hubspot’s Beginner’s Guide to Building a Customer Loyalty Program.
13. Master Search Engine Optimization
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a skill any business owner or marketer should learn to master in the digital age. But mastering SEO doesn’t have to be technical. It can be as simple as positioning the right words in the right place.
Sign Up for Google My Business
Google My Business acts as an online directory when people specifically search for services related to your company. Google My Business allows viewers to view all your contact details and website all in an instant.
Use Keywords in your Image Alt Text
An Alt text description is what Google uses to pop up suggested searches when people search for images or business. When you upload images online, be sure not to leave your Alt Text Description empty, add related keywords and phrases so your company can dominate food delivery search in your area.
Use Geo-Targeted Ads
Google Ad Words allows you to target potential customers who live or as they enter a specific geographic area. It’s most commonly carried out through apps that allow location tracking.
14. Create an Email Marketing Campaign
Compile a list of emails from current and new customers and send out emails to entice customers to your website, app, or call for an order.
About 40% of B2B marketers say email newsletters are most critical to their content marketing success. Email still has a place regardless of social media and online marketing, so much so, that 73% of millennials prefer communications from businesses to come via email.
You can use Wishpond email marketing features to create professional and captivating emails for your food delivery company as well as email automation software to create triggers, reminders, and follow-ups to help increase sales.
If you need a little help along the way don’t forget to sign up for our free email marketing course below.
15. Reward Reviews, Referrals, and feedbacks
What people have to say about your brand online has an impact on your sales. Don’t make the mistake of advertising your business online while ignoring bad reviews and feedback from upset customers.
Take control of the narrative people have of you online, if not all, most. When customers leave negative reviews on Yelp, your website and social media reach out to them and try to rectify the situation.
Let’s be fair. Some people write a negative review and talk badly about your brand simply because of They’re “haters”. And we all know that saying “haters gonna hate.” But for the majority, some people just want to know that their business matters to a brand.
You can use social listening and Google Alerts to find bad reviews. Feel free to use this guide on 4 Best Ways Brands Can Respond to Haters on Instagram, and these tips can also help on other social media platforms like Facebook as well.
If you don’t see reviews at all, start rewarding customers when they give online reviews about your company.
Here’s a recap of the 15 best food delivery marketing ideas to grow your business:
- Keep Improving the Quality of your service
- Create a Website for Your Delivery Business
- Market Your Deliver Service with Social media
- Create a Mobile App
- Collaborate with Food Bloggers
- Print and Handout Business cards or Fliers
- Attend or Sponsor a Local Food Event
- Do Restaurant and Food Establishment Outreach
- Offer Deals for Local Workspaces and Business
- Promote Your Services with Creative Advertising
- Offer Discounts and Deals
- Offer Loyalty Points & Cashback
- Master Search Engine Optimization
- Create an Email Marketing Campaign
- Reward Reviews, Referrals, and feedbacks
Managing a business and staying on top of your marketing can feel like riding a bicycle for the first time, but once you get the hang of it, you’re unstoppable.
Think there’s a marketing idea we forgot to mention? Comment below and share it with the rest of us. I’d love to know.
Check out our complete guide to local marketing for more local marketing strategies.