How to Market Within Your Restaurant

Advertising Tips for Restaurant Customers

Restaurant marketing can happen inside the restaurant as well as outside. Skeeze via Pixabay

Once customers walk through your restaurant door, it is a golden opportunity to advertise upcoming events, menu specials, and any other promotions you have planned. In-house restaurant marketing is an inexpensive way to keep customers coming back. Promoting your social networking sites in-house is another way to connect with customers and encourage word of mouth advertising, which is often the best kind.



A table-tent refers to a plastic display that holds small flyers. Usually they are about 4X6 inches, though many restaurants are using flip-style table tents, promoting many different specials at one time. Large chain restaurants use table-tents in one form or another to promote everything from drink specials to entire dessert menus. Often times your food or beverage supplier will give you free table-tents as part of their marketing. Restaurant managers can create customized menus or flyers right in-house, saving money on professional printing.

Menu Inserts

Menu inserts are clear plastic sleeves that can be inserted into your regular breakfast, lunch of dinner menu. Similar in idea to table-tents, menu inserts are an ideal in-house marketing tool, since every customer that visits looks at a menu. Menu inserts are an effective way to showcase nightly dinner specials, prix fixe menus or a dessert selection. Read more about writing an effective restaurant menu.

Menu Boards

A large chalk board or white board, strategically placed in a dining room is an easy way to list the daily specials as well as any upcoming events. It also saves on paper and printing costs. Just make sure whoever is writing on the menu board has good penmanship.

Bulletin Boards

A bulletin board in the outside the front door, in the waiting area, or even in the restrooms, is a good place to hang flyers about upcoming events or post copies of your menu.

be sure to update the board weekly to remove outdated information and keep it looking tidy. 

Restaurant Servers

One of your most powerful in-house restaurant marketing tools is your servers. A well trained server can act as a walking menu board, explaining specials, suggesting menu items and wine pairings, as well as inform guests about upcoming events. Read more about how to turn servers into salespeople.

Social Media 

Social media marketing campaigns offer restaurants an opportunity to sell their product and services (think beyond the dining room to catering, merchandise and gift certificates). Social media  icons strategically placed on menus, table tents, flyers, etc... remind customers to connect with your restaurant and follow for events and updates. Just make sure that if you are directing customers to your Facebook page or Twitter page that it is updated on a regular basis. 

Marketing and advertising for a new restaurant doesn't have to take a lot of time or money.There are many ways to connect with existing customers and help to build a strong following, starting right inside your dining room. These low cost options are a great way to save money during the early months of business.

Just remember that no matter how you choose to advertise your restaurant, the secrets to success include good food, good people, and good service.