It’s been an interesting year to say the least. Just as we thought the industry was over one bump, another came. But we’re here and it’s Christmas. So keeping in the spirit, we thought we’d keep things positive and write a blog all about this year’s marketing wins.
Without doubt one of the biggest strengths (and wins) for the industry is our ability to support one another, and drive innovation through collaboration. With that in mind we teamed up with Trapeze Media, a hospitality marketing agency headed up by the wonderful Kitty Newman. Kitty knows hospitality through and through, just like us, and like us she’s navigated the highs and lows that the industry brings. 2022 has taught us a lot, here’s our takeaway of Slerp’s best bits.
Kicking things off, SMS has been big for us this year. Early in 2022 we really started implementing SMS into our partners marketing strategies. The fact is, 90% of text messages are read within the first 3 minutes of receiving them, making SMS a really fast and efficient way of reaching your audience. Consumers are becoming more mobile focussed with the rise of smartphones, particularly for those targeting the likes of Gen Z and younger millennials.
A simple, short and sharp message is what’s needed to grab the attention of your audience. An offer plus a time limit (i.e. free delivery for 48hrs), creates a sense of urgency and FOMO, which in turn drives sales. But it’s not just the immediate uptake in orders that makes SMS a great marketing channel. Throughout multiple campaigns we’ve seen a halo effect with a spike of orders even after the offer has expired. One delicious dessert partner saw their revenue increase by as much as 190% several days after the original message. Definitely a win worth celebrating.
It may be the OG of marketing channels these days but email marketing is still a really effective way of communicating with your customers. Whether it’s a regular newsletter with general updates or used to let customers know about a new product or offer. Email marketing remains a very easy and cost effective form of communication.
We’ve recently worked with a partner to launch email marketing for their pizza concept. Their first Friday email send saw a 20% spike in sales compared to their average Friday sales! Since utilising Slerp’s marketing services they have seen a 12% increase in month-on-month online sales. Pairing emails with key events is a great way to boost orders. Download our marketing calendar for inspo on what events you can get involved in.
We’ve had more and more partners recognising the potential of paid ads this year. Advertising on Meta and Google is key to getting you in front of people searching for products and brands like yours. It will help grow your brand awareness, reach new customers and increase sales. Many operators don’t think they need to spend on ads, because they have a website already, so surely customers can find them. Of course your website will rank on Google, and yes, if a customer has already determined to buy direct from you and searches your name there is a good chance they’ll find you. But is that enough? When it comes to browsing, 54.4% of clicks go on the top 3 google ads. That’s a lot of traffic. Moreover, 60% of people now use social media to make purchases. It’s not enough to be on these channels, you have to be at the top in order to drive sales volume. We’ve worked with a range of partners to launch their paid ads this year. To find out more about how paid ads can work for you, get in touch with the team.
How can an offline marketing channel work to drive online orders we hear you ask? Yes the world is becoming more and more digital, but print definitely still has a place in your marketing strategy, particularly in the world of hospitality. It goes hand in hand with aspects like order at table. We have seen evidence that QR ordering increases both AOV and the number of tips that staff get, whilst also reducing some of their core admin.
We have worked with countless partners to print thousands of QR codes both for table ordering and promotional flyers this year. Having signage in your shop can help build your online audience by encouraging your customers to shop online also. Online ordering doesn’t detract from in person business, in fact, 74% of respondents said they order in to replace cooking, not eating out.
Marketing not your expertise? We have a team of experts that create marketing campaigns for partners, we always say better together and recommend utilising multiple channels for maximum effect.
I have to actually start by saying how great it’s been to get to know Slerp. It’s has given me the kind of excited feelings I remember getting when I was a kid asking the fairy godmother in the Cinderella panto for her autograph (actual fact, she was played by the late great Barbera Windsor).
So, that’s one great thing to come out of 2022, here’s some more.
Let me tell you how you can best work with an agency to get your TikTok profile off the ground
The Trapeze Media team are experts in TikTok. For more info get in touch.
Trapeze Media has been working with Dirty Bones since 2019 and this year has been the year we were able to really show what we can do for increasing footfall into venues. This is a huge focus for Dirty Bones in 2023 as we see the hospitality sector continue to need support in getting bums on seats, increasing revenue and being confident in where advertising budget is spent.
Without giving away all our secrets, here’s how Trapeze Media generated venue bookings at an average of £0.93p per booking AND tracked venue visits at £0.27p using Google Ads.
We track three main things: ad engagements, venue bookings, and venue visits. So, we
know when customers visit Dirty Bones after seeing ads on Google. We use location data to show venue-specific ads, for maximum relevance making the ads perfectly personalised, and bookings/visits are easy to attribute.
Every year I’m asked ‘should I still be focusing on Facebook?’ ‘My Instagram engagement has gone through the floor, is it even worth it anymore?’
I’ll be honest and say that we’ve found it a lot harder to drive sales through Facebook & Instagram and we find engagement a challenge these days as well. Hence the need to get to grips with TikTok.
However, much like Slerp, we find that the Meta platforms are still the best performers when we look at our paid advertising for lead generation.
We have had a lot of success running lead generation campaigns for clients this year. Especially for the hospitality and tourism sector where you’re not always looking to drive a quick and direct sale. The customer journey can be quite a wiggly one in these sectors. Here’s how we’re driving leads for two niche clients with very different goals using Meta paid advertising (that’s Facebook & Instagram)
First of all, we’ll look at the work we’re doing for Precious Homes. Precious Homes are a Social Care provider we’ve been working with since 2021. They came to us looking for help recruiting staff for their care homes across the country. After some A-B testing we discovered that in some areas of the country we were getting more applicants with and without experience in care, so, we changed things up. We amended the copy so that it was clear training was made available on the job and we increased the number of applicants by encouraging those without experience to apply. All leads are passed directly onto the recruitment team to follow up with by email or phone. Another very successful lead generation campaign we are running is for Goodnestone House. This is a gorgeous manor house in Kent who are looking to increase wedding bookings this year as they’re building a new Orangery in the gardens.
We started by doing our research into the area and determining the specific postcodes that would be likely to travel the distance to visit as well as have the budget needed for a venue like this. Again we ran lead generation form ads across Facebook & Instagram and included specific qualifying questions, one in particular related to what budget they had available. This then qualifies the lead so when we pass it onto the house manager to book a tour he can prioritise who he speaks to. We’re generating between 30 and 40 leads a month of people who have a wedding in the summer and a budget of £30K min spend.
Our most popular blogs this year have been either to do with TikTok or having difficult conversations online. Our Senior Account Manager Sarah has been making a name for themselves this year as the person to talk to if you want to be more confident in how to handle trolls online or how to use more inclusive language in your marketing content. It was Sarah who wrote the blog ‘ Dealing with social media trolls on the brand account ’ and ‘Navigating challenging conversations: customer service on social media’
Challenging conversations, in the form of bad reviews or just trolls having ‘fun’ aren’t going anywhere and with the hospitality sector having to recruit so many new staff and with competition high to be seen online, how we handle these reviews is really important.
Read the full articles to get the detail but the best thing to remember is that these conversations can be turned around, you can loop the customer back into the fold of the brand and build an even deeper trust, but, if they’re a troll, there’s often not much good to be had and it’s often best to block and walk away – unless you’ve got a great comeback and the brand team is on board.
If incorporating inclusive language into your daily communications both internal and external then make 2023 the year that’s high on your agenda. We are making sure we build accessibility elements into all the work we do, whether it’s videos always having subtitles, images with alt text for e-readers, using CamelCase when writing #tags, keeping copy non- gendered and inclusive. You can see Sarah’s talk on the importance of using inclusive language in your marketing communications here.
So this has been fun, looking back on what we’ve done this year and what we’ll be taking forward. It’s been very fun to collaborate with Slerp on this and look forward to what more we do together in 2023!
You may also like