With the current Covid-19 pandemic happening, companies across the globe are facing a great depression.
It is only natural for the current surviving businesses to be fearful of their future, with the number of firms closing down and unemployment rates rising daily.
Lockdowns and restrictions have been set in place in different countries to help contain the spread of the virus. With Singapore going into a “silent lockdown”, our local F&B businesses are one of the many industries that are currently struggling to sustain.
“What’s the point in continuing to market during this restricted period if everyone’s encouraged to stay home?”
I’ve seen many local F&B businesses in Singapore give up on their marketing at this point. It is understandable that they no longer see the need to spend the same amount of time and budget on marketing when no one is currently allowed to dine in.
Now, let me just stop you here.
To the business owners and marketers of F&B businesses in Singapore (or anywhere else in the world), NOW is the time to work on marketing your business even more.With social media set in place to our advantage in staying connected, there is no better time to focus on building a stronger community and online presence for your brand! Click To Tweet
Take this as a good creative break from your daily hustle to act on the ideas you have been wanting to achieve and set your mind to it.
Besides, it’s not every day you get to work from home once this pandemic comes to an end.
4 easy ways to market your F&B business in Singapore
With various social media platforms available for free, brands should be making full use of them to stay connected with their audiences.
Even with being stuck at home, there are still many possible ways to market your brand.
Use this time to study each platform and see what marketing mediums they do best in.
It is said that the total number of active users on Instagram reaches up to 500 million+ daily. With that crazy amount of reach possible in a single day, imagine how many more people your brand will be able to reach out to if you started being more active.
By being “more active”, I’m not driving at posting three times a day.The maximum number of posts that a brand should be pushing out on Instagram should only reach a maximum of two posts in a day. Click To Tweet
Instead, make use of Instagram’s Stories feature to push out contents that are not “post-worthy” enough. Providing value in a more light-hearted medium, there are many different marketing approaches that you can explore with the Stories feature.
Here is an interesting example by Chipotle:
Chipotle’s contents have now turned to a meme approach to fit the interest of their main target audience (which is a very important point for your F&B business as well!). However, they used to post simple ingredient stories of the different types of diets to educate their consumers on how to prepare their salad bowls.
One other way that you can make use of Instagram Stories is to create different highlights to promote different types of information.
In light of the Covid-19 situation, here are some examples that you can carry out with Instagram’s highlight feature.
- Create a highlight to inform your customers of your branch’s preventive measures even when there are no dine-ins allowed
- Include a highlight to inform your customers on the delivery methods available for your F&B business during the restriction/lockdown (if applicable)
- Have a highlight to teach your customers how to prepare some easy dishes at home during a lockdown/restriction (Much like what Chipotle used to do!)
- Make use of and highlight on the current relatable hashtags (Be creative and add it in your caption!)
Truth be told, food promotions are no longer as attractive as it used to be. The behaviour of your consumers have changed, and they want to be home as much as they possibly can.
So instead of continuing to post about your special offers day after day, assure them by pushing out more details on the preventive measures and hygiene carried out at your cafe or restaurant.
If your F&B business provides delivery, start promoting on that instead and think about how you can carry out a contactless service to reassure them even more.
Ultimately, F&B businesses should be encouraging people to stay home. With dine-ins currently being stopped to help in being one of our Covid-19 circuit breakers, change your marketing efforts in promoting on your delivery orders instead!
If you didn’t already know, your Instagram posts and stories upload can be easily linked to your Facebook and many other platforms.
Contents can be reused on alternate days to reach out to your different target audiences on each platform. For example, the same content posted on Instagram on Monday can be posted on Facebook on Tuesday.
So what makes Facebook so different from Instagram?
The audiences on Facebook have more tolerance towards lengthier contents (such as caption and video length).
Facebook audiences are statistically older compared to the ones on Instagram. Hence, the reason why I mentioned that it is important to know the main target audience for each of your brand’s platform.
During the start of the restriction in Singapore, many F&B businesses took their Covid-19 official statement to Facebook and Instagram. Similar to the results of our F&B clients, the same lengthy statement seemed to have generated more engagement on Facebook than it did on Instagram.
Likewise, users are more willing to watch long videos on Facebook than they are while scrolling through Instagram.
There’s a reason why Instagram limits the post time to a maximum of 60 seconds and created a separate IGTV feature for longer video contents instead!
As you can see, there are limitless amounts of content ideas and strategies that can be pushed out on each social media platform. Before jumping onto creating your next post, take the time to study them as a consumer.
Find out what is currently trending and how you can implement that while bringing value to your consumers.
Which brings me to my next point.
Tik Tok has recently jumped to popularity, with over 614 million downloads in total on the App Store and Google Play in 2019.
Most popular among the Gen Z, 41% of Tik Tok users are aged between 16 to 24 years old (who might not even own a Facebook account). So if your brand is looking to reach out to this age group, Tik Tok will be your answer.
Even if your main target audience belongs to an older crowd, being on an additional social media platform would not hurt. All it does is bring you more reach to new audiences who might see the value in interacting with your brand!
So how can F&B businesses in Singapore use Tik Tok to their advantage while relating to the younger crowd during the Covid-19 pandemic?
TIK TOK INFLUENCERS:
They are not much different from the Influencers you see on Instagram, except maybe with a younger group of followers.
Here is an Influencer following guide from one of our previous article “Top 13 Influencer Marketing Trends In Singapore [Updated 2020]“:
Reach out and work with them on a paid collaboration. If they are willing to do a barter exchange, go ahead with that by all means! If this is something that you do not have time for or if you are unsure of how to start, there are agencies like us who can handle the project for you.
Tap on their followers by doing a brand placement feature post. An idea could be to send them meals during the lockdown/restriction to encourage the public to stay home and get them to talk about the promotions you have or the health benefits of your food. This could help in raising awareness for your brand as a means to promote your delivery services.
TIK TOK CONTENTS:
If your cafe or restaurant is still open for pick-ups, you can start to plan for contents surrounding the daily operations taking place at the branch itself.
Be creative and come up with ideas that will entertain the younger audiences on Tik Tok, while educating them on the preventive measures to take during these trying times.
The contents do not always have to surround the food you serve, but it can be something that brings more awareness to your brand.
For example, coming up with a comical skit on the “Types of customers” before and after Covid-19. Get the staff members working at the branch to be a part of the video, so that customers who visit your cafe or restaurant in the future will already have a sense of connection with your brand.
If your cafe or restaurant has already gone on closure for the time being, you can still produce quality content at the comfort of your own home!
Here are some examples:
- Food Prep
- Satisfying food videos
- Easy recipes with instructional steps
- Eating hacks
- Food hacks
- Food challenge
Use these content ideas and implement them to raise more awareness for your brand.Building a strong community online will definitely reap its benefits once everything is back to normal. Work hard on being digitally active and people WILL come to remember you.Click To Tweet
Yes, collaborations happen all the time these days and that’s what makes business even more interesting!
They might even be your competitors, but it is always good to support one another and look out for your own community.
F&B businesses should take this chance to work together in bringing new content to your consumers. This acts as a form of distraction from all the negative news. Have your marketing excite them in having something to look forward to once the pandemic is over!
If your cafe or restaurant lacks in a certain area such as desserts or drinks, find a brand strong in that area to collaborate with.
Tap on each other’s audiences as a marketing method to reach out to a new group of consumers.
In fact, it does not even have to be a collaboration with another F&B branch, but something that introduces a new innovation to improve on your users’ experience.
Take Starbucks and Nestlé’s partnership as an example.
With this partnership, we are now able to enjoy a new range of premium Starbucks coffee at home with NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto coffee machines. To find out more about this collaboration idea, click here.
The podcasting trend is still as fresh as it was in 2019, but how can it link to marketing your F&B business?
This is where you will have to take a different approach as a Founder or a Marketer of a F&B business.
With podcasting, you are able to produce audio contents that last for as long as you want it to last. This gives you the advantage to talk about anything you want in relation to your industry.
In the podcasts, it is not necessary to promote your brand. Once you’ve managed to secure a following, people will naturally want to find out more about you and what you do!
Here are some podcasting ideas that you can start with:
- Food expert (Talk about the benefits of each ingredient, nutrition, etc)
- Recipe sharing (Step by step audio instructions to take users through the cooking process)
- Health expert (Talk about foods that will help in leading a healthier lifestyle, come up with different diet options for people who are looking to reach a certain weight goal, etc)
- Entrepreneur (Talk about how you started on your F&B business and take them through your life experiences)
If you will like to learn more on how to start a podcast, you may read this step-by-step guide here.
Even after trying out the 4 Easy Ways To Market Your F&B Business During Covid-19 In Singapore that I have mentioned above, there are still many approaches to take in marketing your F&B business during this pandemic.
If you have not started concentrating on digital marketing during this day and age, it is not too late to start now. Take this time to keep up with the growing trends and implement your business model with it.
With everyone stuck at home, it is the best time to start pushing out your marketing contents now!
Make sure to bookmark this article to refer back to it as you’re working on your new marketing materials.
Should you like to seek for help on your brand’s Social Media Management or Advertising Campaign instead, feel free to comment down below or drop an email to discuss more!
Stop procrastinating, and do something to start now!