“It is with words as with sunbeams. The more they are condensed, the deeper they burn” Robert Southey
Human attention span is at its lowest ever, thanks to technology. According to a study by Microsoft, the average human being now has an attention span of eight seconds. This is a sharp decrease from the average attention span of 12 seconds in the year 2000, and it keeps decreasing.
Campaign Monitor reports that in 2018 the average office worker receives 121 emails per day.
The average opening rate in the restaurant sector, according to Mailchimp’s stats in March 2018, is 20.26%, with the average click rate of 1.06%.
What does this mean? You have about two seconds to raise attention and interest in a very competitive market.
Here are your top tips to increase sales and conversions via newsletters for your restaurant:
First of all you have to ensure you have a sales and marketing plan to achieve your commercial goals. Your communication plan should be aligned to this, with the appropriate message promoted through relevant channels, including newsletters, to your target market each month.
- Target market
Customers come first. What you sell in your newsletter has to be relevant to them, and has to solve their ‘problems’ not your or your venue’s. This means you have to segment your database and customise your newsletter to be relevant to the selected segment.
Once you are clear about your message and market, the next step is to ensure you capture your audience’s attention. A lot of newsletter software allows you to check for the day and time of the newsletter that had the highest opening rate. Learn from these stats and start to be consistent.
I.e.: if you send a newsletter on a Monday morning it often gets deleted straight away. A lot of your clients may be returning to their office and their outlook is clogged with emails on a Monday morning.
- Subject line
Less is more; keep it to 35 characters or less. Make sure it is relevant and to the point. If you sell a set menu for £25, just say Summer Set Menu for £25. Don’t try to be too creative or clever, this is your two second chance to raise attention, to stand out from the crowd and persuade your recipient to open your email. Remember on average your customer may get 121 emails a day; they won’t be opening every single one of them. A/B testing is always a good idea.
A picture is worth a thousand words. If your recipient opens the newsletter to find an essay, they will bounce out of it. If they find an unappealing blurry dark photo of a dish, they will not bother reading about how delicious it is. Make your photo the hero of the newsletter, every time.
- Content and length
As above people have short attention spams. The length and content of your newsletter must be short, and to the point.
Each newsletter should have the maximum of 3 sections, each consisting of about 50 words. Think about not what you want to say, but what your customer wants to hear. What do they get by booking with you, is it a discount or a unique experience?
- Call to action
This is a very important last step that often gets overlooked. Make sure your ‘book now, ‘read now’, or ‘enquire now’ buttons are well placed, clear and functioning well. It would be a shame to lose out on sales because you haven’t tested this button before you sent out the newsletter to your database.
Each venue and its database are different and will require a bespoke approach.
Even so, if you follow the above steps, then you can cut through the crowd, get your recipients attention with your good timing, raise interest with an eye-catching subject line, create desire with your photo, convince them with your appealing and relevant content, allowing them to easily book immediately - you got a good chance of increasing sales from your newsletters.
I hope you enjoyed this summary. If you have any questions or comments, please drop me an email, I would love to hear your thoughts.