How do I market my directory to restaurants?
January 7, 2007 3:56 AM   Subscribe

How do I market my restaurant directory to restaurant owners/managers?

I have an online directory of motorcyclist-friendly restaurants. So far the listings have come from personal experiences and recommendations from friends. I would like to spread the word to more establishments but am unsure how to market the site to restaurant owners and managers. Who does one talk to about advertising? The restaurant manager? The owner? How does one contact that person? By mail? By phone? When is the best time to contact? The lunch rush seems like a bad time; so when is a good time?
posted by retrorider to Food & Drink (4 answers total)
Best time to call (in person) is after 2 but before 4. Mornings are usually too busy with setup, staffing issues, etc. If there are two shifts of managers, this is the most likely time to catch both of them. Owners are not usually as readily available as managers, although some owners ARE the managers. Best plan is to ask for the manager, although it is the owner who will most often have the final say on all advertising.

Phone calls will often get lost in the shuffle and mail soliciting subscription to an advertising venture will usually just get tossed in the bin. Face to face meetings are time consuming, I know, but will have the greatest success rate by far.

In my experience as a restaurant operator, there are usually a plethora of advertising opportunities and a very limited budget. Be sure to have a pitch that lets them know why advertising in your directory would be a wise investment. Have stats available as to how many people access your directory, how often they eat out, how much they spend and such and show them how other restaurants that they may consider to be their direct competition are using your service. Good luck with your venture.
posted by alltomorrowsparties at 4:27 AM on January 7, 2007 [2 favorites]

Retrorider - Also post to motorcycle forums. There's a lot of motorcyclists out there who have their own lists of this kind of restaurant. had the "Greasy Spoon Archives" before they lost their forum database a few months ago... I'm sure we could recreate it. Some of the motorcyclists have become close (or at least 'known' to the owners after years of visiting.
posted by SpecialK at 9:01 AM on January 7, 2007

What alltomorrowsparties said. Also, some restaurants actually have a marketing person - I was one such, briefly - and when you call ask if they do. As someone who has been buying ad space for years, I hate drop ins and I usually end up tossing and forgetting letters, but I will remember you better if I've met you. So send me an email or call to set up an appointment. When you get to the appointment, show me that you're familiar with my business (at least on a skim the website basis) and I'll be a lot more likely to take you seriously.
posted by mygothlaundry at 9:13 AM on January 7, 2007 [1 favorite]

I'm not entirely sure from your question whether you're looking to sell them advertising, or just get permission to include them in your listings. If the latter, you should keep in mind that many restaurants will happily list themselves anywhere and everywhere that they can, regardless of whether it's really an appropriate listing. So, if you're thinking of calling and asking whether they'd like to be listed in your list of motorcycle friendly restaurants, chances are, a number of places that are not even slightly motorcycle friendly will say yes anyway.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:47 AM on January 7, 2007

« Older Unwanted iPod vs. Happy Girlfriend   |   Tell me about the property market in Sydney Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.