By Nick Fosberg   |   February 21, 2017

Ever feel like you’ve wasted money marketing your bar or restaurant? What if you had a proven formula that could generate a positive ROI almost every time you ran a new ad campaign? In this episode Nick delivers the 5 key ingredients you need in every restaurant marketing campaign to get the highest ROI possible.

In This Episode You’ll Learn:

  • The number one mistake owners are making with the headline of their ads and why it’s draining their pocket books.
  • How to get your customers / prospects to take action on your offers right away instead of forgetting about them.
  • How to grab the attention of your prospects and get them to consume your entire marketing message without using images.
  • The 2 types of subject lines to use in your e-mails in order to get the highest open rate – this one little tweak will easily triple your open rates on your emails.

Links Mentioned In This Podcast:

Download The 5 Key Ingredients To Tripling Your Restaurant’s Marketing ROI
Episode #3 – How To Profit From Every Marketing Campaign You Run
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5 Key Ingredients You Need To Triple Your Restaurant Marketing ROI

Welcome to episode number four, five key ingredients you need in every single ad to get the highest ROI on your marketing dollars.

I remember my dad talking to me a few years ago saying, “I remember when all you had to do was put your specials and promotions in the newspaper or on the radio and boom, your place was busy.”

10, 15, or 20 years ago, you could definitely advertise your bar or restaurant that way, or any business that way, but today, there’s more competition than there’s ever been. There are more distractions than ever when it comes to the busy life that we live, and there is more and more competition fighting for our prospects’, our customers’, attention when it comes to marketing.

I get so many different bar and restaurant owners coming to me and saying, “Hey, my marketing is not working. I’m spending money. I feel like it’s a waste of money.”

And the reason is because of just promoting your specials, your prices, and expecting people to come in just based on that, which is exactly what I used to do six or seven ago when I almost lost my bar, until I discovered a totally different way to market my business and get new customers in the door.

I’m going to go through the five key ingredients that I’ve learned that you need in every single paid advertising media to get the best results. Now yes, you still want to go on your social media platforms and put your specials and promotions on there and let people know what’s going on, but when it comes down to paid advertising, you need to get a positive return. That’s the whole point!

When we’re spending money on advertising, we want to recoup that investment plus make a profit, but that rarely, rarely happens for so many bar and restaurant owners. So let’s get into those five key ingredients.

The first one is you need a powerful headline, and your headline is not your logo. People don’t care about our logos. What people care about is: what’s in it for me? Why should I do business with you over the next person?

Marketing experts say 80 percent of the success of your advertising is going to come from your headline, and your headline is all about grabbing the prospect’s attention and getting them to read. Think about it when you’re reading through the newspaper or reading through a magazine. Do you read everything? Absolutely not. You skim through a lot of stuff, right?

Well, your advertising gets skimmed through quite a bit as well by people who you want to target, but your ad isn’t popping out to them. It’s not grabbing their attention. So you want to be able to either call out your prospects attention, and we’ll get into some examples here, or there needs to be some kind of stated value that grabs their attention.

So you need to think of your prospect and think, OK, how can I grab their attention? This specific person, how can grab their attention and get them to consume the rest of the information?

You could be giving away the best offer in town, the best value, but if you don’t grab their attention with a headline, they’re not going to see that. They’re not going to know that, unless maybe that’s stated right there in the headline and then that’s going to get people to read.

I do a ton of email marketing as most of you guys know, and do very, very well with it. Your headline is your subject line of your email. And in order to get your emails opened and read, it needs to draw in some curiosity to get people to wonder, huh, what’s this about?

And a simple thing like that is just asking a question, putting their first name, “Nick, can you tell me more about this?” or “Hey, have you heard about this?” That always drives into curiosity, “Did I hear about what?” Or it could be, again, value driven, something percentage off inside or whatever your offer may be.

So again, the best types of subject lines are ones that either state the value or draw in some curiosity. Here are a couple of examples, and I’m going to give you guys a free download that you guys can get. It’s the report on The Five Key Ingredients You need in Every Ad. It will give you some more examples. I’m going to cover some here, and you can get that download below the show notes.

One example that I’ve used quite a bit is: Local restaurant owner infuriates the big chain restaurants by giving away hundreds of free meals. When someone reads that, they’re thinking, well who is the local restaurant owner? And then “infuriates” – that’s a key word that grabs that curiosity. It’s infuriating the big chain restaurant owners for giving away hundreds of free dinners.

And then that even brings in value. OK, this guy is giving away some free dinners. Let’s take a look at this. And again, I don’t want you to always think this has to be some kind of value or giveaway. It doesn’t. This could be about some kind of premium promotion or premium priced menu item.

Here’s another one: Why women in Chicago are calling into work after leaving –, and then you would put in the name of your business there. I ran this one when we were doing a ladies’ night a few years back, and it worked out really, really well. This is curiosity driven: why women in Chicago are calling into work after leaving Rural on Tap.

Now, this message would be targeted directly to women. If men saw it, they would want to know what’s going on too, but now people think, oh god, what’s going on? I’ve got to read this. Well, the copy, the compelling message which we’re going to get into here shortly, was all about how much fun these women were having on ladies’ night, and that they would have to call into work the next day because they were just too tired from all the fun that they had. So it’s a great headline, but the whole point of the headline is to get them to consume and read the rest of your promotion, your offer, your compelling message.

Here’s another headline, and this is all about calling out your prospect. I’ve used this for football many, many times: Men who love beer and football must read. You put that in the sports section. You do Facebook ads targeting men of a certain age around your business.

Guys who see this who love football and beer are going to stop and say, “Oh, this person’s talking directly to me. I need to read the rest of this.” So you need a powerful headline that calls out your prospect to get them to read the rest of your message. Again, we have more examples in the free download.

The second one is a valuable offer. You have to have some type of offer in your paid advertising, because it’s the easiest way to track and measure your results. And you should be tracking and measuring your results, because you could be spending $500 to $1,000 dollars a month on advertising that just isn’t working but you just keep doing it over and over, and that’s the definition of insanity.

Why keep spending that money on a particular strategy and particular promotion and particular offer that is not working. If it’s not working the first time, it’s not going to work the second time.

And again, your offer could be a discount or it could be the experience that they’re going to have. It could be the premium VIP experience they are going to pay for that’s top dollar. It could be a limited time that it’s $100 dollars a ticket to come in and have this great experience with wine and whatever at your restaurant, but put some type of offer in there.

The third thing is a compelling message, and I talked more about his in detail in episode three, and there’s going to be a link to this as well. I won’t get into too much detail here, because episode three is all about the compelling message. But again, advertising is about one thing and one thing only, and that’s getting your prospects, your customers, to take action and buy, to get them to walk into your doors. We’re spending money. We need to recoup that investment.

So the compelling message all comes down to what are you going to say within your marketing to persuade your customers or prospects to walk in the door and do business with you? So you need a compelling message, and again, check out episode three. Look at the free download, the report. There are going to be examples of compelling copy in that that you can read and take and even swipe and use in your own business.

The fourth thing is going to be scarcity. Again, we all live crazy, busy lives, and we need to get people to take action and not forget about this offer or promotion of what we’re promoting or offering. So the goal here is to make your offer, your message, irresistible, fun, exciting.

And then you want to put some kind of time restriction on this so that they actually take action. If someone sees something and they want to go, it’s just with having kids and jobs and everything else that’s going on, people tend to forget things. So we need to figure out how to get this person to take action where they can’t miss out on this opportunity, and get them in the door right away.

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Download 5 Key Ingredients To Get The Highest ROI On Your Marketing Dollars

And again, that’s obviously using with expiration dates. You could say the first X amount of people to respond get this offer if they call in and book a reservation, whatever it may be. Or maybe it’s only available on this date.

In the very first sales letter I wrote to small businesses to book holiday parties, what I did with scarcity was I said the first 10 people that call back and book this party, to take action on this, are going to receive this, because I can’t afford to give any more of these away. They’re just too valuable. And I let them know that this has been sent to 400 other people and they are going to go quick, and the first 10 people to respond are going to get this amazing offer.

Obviously, we were trying to do as many as we could, and we ended up doing 16 of these parties. And as a result of these 16 parties, we did a little over $16,000 dollars in sales from that one letter. So if I didn’t have that urgency and scarcity in there – one, I had a good headline. I had a great offer in there. I had a good message.

But the scarcity got people to read this and they picked up the phone right then and there in order to book their party, book their event. If I would not have put that in there, people would say, “Oh, this is great. I’ll get back to this.” But I created that urgency, that scarcity, to get them to call now rather than procrastinate and probably never take action on it.

Then number five is the call to action, which kind of goes in line with the scarcity. But tell them how to get the offer that you’re making them. And I know that’s common sense, but you’d be surprised. Sometimes we’ve given away some of these different offers and party packages, and they think that they can just walk in. But we need them to call ahead of time so we can be staffed well enough and make sure we have room for them.

So you want to make sure you let people know. Maybe it’s: bring in the coupon. Maybe it’s: show this on your phone. Maybe it’s actually: print out the email. Some of our offers go out by email, which obviously email is on the phone, but there are certain things that I want attached to receipts, so I’ll tell them, “Hey, you’ve got to print this out and bring it in.” Or maybe it’s: call in.

Or maybe it’s go to this web page to a lead capture page to sign up to get this. As most of you guys know if you’ve been following me for a while, I’m a huge, huge fan of running lead capture promotions where you’re getting people to hand over their information or where you’re taking your existing customers and getting them to opt in again, just to re-engage them, to get them to start taking action and they’re doing what it is you want them to do and they’re signing up for this offer, this giveaway, or this promotion, whatever it may be. So the call to action could also be to go to the actual web page.

So in conclusion with all this, the number one job of marketing is obviously to make a sale. We’re trying to recoup our advertising costs. Putting our specials, our prices out there with a nice food image and follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook is not the way to do that, because everybody else is doing that! The big chain restaurants can do that. They can afford “awareness” style marketing.

We need to be more strategic and pinpoint exactly who we want to target for this particular promotion. And then we need to focus on what we need to say to grab that specific person’s attention, because our promotions are not right for everybody in our area. There are certain promotions that certain people are going to come to, and we need to think about that. It does take a little bit more time.

However, when you do spend that extra 10, 15, or 20 minutes to really think about your whole promotion, who are the types of people that are going to come and what’s going to be that message, that hook that’s going to grab them into your advertising in order to get them to consume the rest of the marketing message to get them to come in the door, you’re going to make a hell of a lot more money and you will triple the results on your current marketing ROI.

One last thing I just want to say again is to download the five key ingredient report. You’ll see it right here on the web page, on the blog. So you can download that right now and you’ll get more examples of the headlines, compelling copy, and really how to use scarcity and urgency. And again, all of that will be in the show notes.

I hope you guys have enjoyed this episode. Again, if you have not yet left us a great review if you think these podcasts are great, please do that for us on iTunes, Google Play, or wherever you’re listening to this. Make sure you subscribe and just leave us a five-star review if you think this is five-star content.

And if you have any questions or comments, you could also leave those in the very bottom of the website of this episode as well. I read everything, so I can answer any other kinds of questions from there. Thanks again. We’ll see you on the next episode.

Nick Fosberg

Nick Fosberg is known as one of the highest paid, marketing and promotional consultants in the bar & restaurant industry and he owns 2 bar / restaurants in the Chicagoland area. He's famous for creating some of the highest grossing digital marketing promotions in the history of the bar & restaurant business..... without spending a penny on marketing. All done through e-mail & Facebook posts. 

Click here to get a free copy of my latest book.

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