Email marketing continues to be a strong driver of ROI. You can average a $42 return per $1 spent. Additionally, email engagement is trending up, with 78% of companies seeing it increase in the last year. Making an impact in the inbox could be an excellent strategy for restaurant and food service advertisers. Try pitching these restaurant email campaign ideas that can help them re-engage and drive sales. 

$1 to $42

Why Pitch Email Marketing?

Besides the statistics above, here are reasons why email marketing is a unique channel that advertisers should consider:

  • It’s opt-in, so recipients agreed to receive communications from the business.
  • The audience is “warmer” than others, as they have an awareness of the brand.
  • It’s less expensive than direct mail.
  • You can segment by audience type to deliver a more personalized message. For example, a group that recently dined at the restaurant may receive one offer. Those that haven’t in the last three months could receive a different one.
email sample

Restaurant Email Campaign Ideas

What should you recommend to advertisers? Here are some fresh ideas to help you:

“We Miss You” Emails

If your advertiser has customers on their email list who haven’t dined with them in a while, they can send them a classic “we miss you” email but with a different spin on it. In the last year-plus, consumers changed how they dine. Many avoided in-person dining and adopted delivery or curbside.

Include in the email the different options to enjoy the restaurant’s great menu. Make sure customers know that the restaurant can accommodate their comfort level. You can also include a time-limited offer to the customer to drive urgency. An example would be “order or dine in during the next week to receive 20% off.”

Welcome Emails

Another tactic for restaurants to consider is promoting a coupon for those who sign up for emails. It’s a great way to build a list. Once they convert, a welcome email should arrive in their inbox with the coupon.

Track to see if the new customer uses the coupon code. If they don’t within a specific time period, you could launch an additional email. It could extend the offer and re-engage the customer.

Loyalty Program Emails

Customers love loyalty programs. Your advertisers likely do as well. They get repeat business, and their patrons get rewards. Continue to nurture this with monthly loyalty program emails. For anyone who signs up either online or in-store, send them a rundown of what’s new, such as menu items or special events.

Remind them how they can use their loyalty rewards, either by cashing in points or through other promotions.

Online Order Follow-Up

When customers order online, they have to provide an email address. Note that this doesn’t mean companies can email them promotions unless they opt in. Thus, that needs to be clear.

For those with permission, restaurants can send a follow-up email thanking the customer for the order and delivering a new promotion or a prompt to join a loyalty club. Another option is to ask the recipient to follow the business on social media, opening up a new communication channel.

Special Invitations

If your restaurant advertiser is hosting an upcoming event, they should invite their email customer base. Such opportunities could include wine dinners, live music or charity-related events. (Check out our national day campaign ideas for inspiration!)

A special invitation email demonstrates to customers that the event is important and that you hope they’ll be a part of it. Be sure to include information on how they can make a reservation.

Celebrating Customers

If your advertiser has demographic data on their customers, such as birthday or anniversary, they should send out celebration emails. Wishing them a happy birthday or anniversary makes the relationship feel more intimate. Adding in a gift valid for the entire month could certainly draw them to celebrate at your advertiser’s restaurant.

Truly Appetizing Restaurant Email Campaign Ideas

Email marketing is a vital channel for restaurant advertisers. It offers a chance to have a conversation between business and customer that’s more personal. With these enticing ideas, they’ll likely be hungry for more.