If there is one social network that your restaurant business needs to be on, it’s Facebook. Facebook has the largest active user base of any social network, has some great business oriented tools in its advertising potential, and is probably the social network where most of your customers spend their time online. On top of these obvious strengths, there is one other tool that makes Facebook a no-brainer for restaurant owners: events. Here is a look at how to throw Facebook, events why you should, and some best practices to follow when using Facebook as an event planning and promotion platform.
Why You Should Use Facebook Events
If you hold events at your restaurant, you should be using Facebook to promote them with the Facebook events tool. The event tool is free and easy to use, and can massively boost the attendance of your events. When your business uses the event tool, you will be able to invite all of your personal Facebook friends as well as all of the fans of your page to attend the event you are hosting. You can also easily promote the event link in your email marketing and other channels, and spread the word to anyone on Facebook very easily. Facebook events even remind your friends and fans to attend, resulting in more people showing up at your events.
How To Setup a Facebook Event
When you are logged into Facebook, creating an event page for an event you are hosting at your restaurant is very easy. Here are a few steps.
1. “Create Event”
From your Facebook’s timeline feed, click on the icon on the right hand of the screen that says “events.” Then, click the blue button on the top right hand side of your events screen that says “create.”
2. Fill Out Every Field
Once you have clicked “create,” a window will pop up asking you for information about your event. Try to fill out every field as completely as you can. The most important things to know from the start are your event time, date, and location. You can write a description later if you can’t think of one now.
3. Add an Event Photo
Once you’ve filled out the important fields in the pop-up window from the last step, you will be taken to your new event page. Notice that your event page has it’s own unique URL, which you can share on all of your online channels. Once on this page, the first thing you want to do is add an event photo. To do so, click the “add event photo” button on the top right hand corner of the screen.
Congratulations, you’ve created your first event! Once you have all of the fields in your event page filled out adequately, including a good description of your event, it’s time to start inviting people and promoting your event. Here are a few “best practices” to help you make sure your events are successful.
Facebook Event Best Practices
Creating your Facebook event was easy, but managing your event page well and getting people to show up at your restaurant on the day of your event can be a bit more challenging. Here are some tips.
Post On Your Event Page Semi-Frequently
When you post on your event page as the host of your event, many people who have responded to your invite will get a Facebook notification. This is a great way to share news and updates, but it’s also a good way to keep your event on the minds of your fans and supporters.
Make Your Event “Public” and Ask For Help
By default, events will be “private” when they are created, meaning only your fans and their friends will be able to see your event page. Change this setting to “public” by clicking the “edit” button on the right hand of the screen from your event page. Once you have set your event to “public,” all of your supporters can invite all of their friends and connections! Ask for the help of your most reliable supporters, and encourage everyone to invite their own friends from your event page.
The earlier you create an event page for your restaurant’s events, the more time you will have to create interest and promote your event. As soon as you have a date and time locked into place for any upcoming event at your restaurant, go ahead and make an event page. The more time your give yourself to recruit people, the better!
There are a lot of ways to use social media to promote your events, but making a Facebook event page may just be the quickest, easiest, and most effective single step you can take. Next time you throw an event at your restaurant, revisit this guide and review our tips for making your event a success.
Rafi Cohen, a graduate of Baruch College & Brooklyn native is the Co-Founder @ Orders2me, an online ordering platform that gives restaurant owners all the features they need to grow their business in the digital age.
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We are on a mission to help local restaurants thrive in the new digital economy. Our blog is designed to give local restaurants best practices from some of the top restaurants in the world today.