When you own a restaurant, you’re often considering and painstakingly planning new entrees to add to the menu, but are you spending the same amount of energy thinking about the new customers who may soon be ordering from it?
Our Town America, a marketing company that specializes in reaching new movers, recently commissioned a survey of more than 650 Millennial men and women (ages 22 to 38) who had moved in the last five years and found that 83.7 percent of them said that they plan on buying a home in the future. In other words, that’s potentially a lot of new people who could be going to your restaurant.
Likewise, you could be losing a lot of Millennial customers, too, if they’re moving to a house that’s far from your place of business. You may not often think about it, or notice, but people are likely moving in and out of your neighborhood all the time.
We’re a very mobile society. Estimates suggest that 35.5 million Americans move every year, far more than many countries such as those in Europe. That means you often can gain customers (new movers) and lose them, too (customers who move away). If you aren’t already marketing to new movers, the transient nature of our society is something you and, well, every restaurant owner should consider when marketing.
After all, we’re all creatures of habit. You probably have a lot of loyal customers –but you may struggle to attract new people who have lived in the area for some time because they’re loyal to your competitors. It’s just human nature. People find a routine that they like, and they stick with it. But new movers? They don’t have habits and routines yet. They also don’t have a favorite restaurant –yet. That’s the argument for restaurants –or any local business, really –marketing to new movers. You want to find potential loyal customers and bring them into try out your place, and hopefully get them to return a second and third time, before they put down roots and start picking their favorite restaurants, which may or may not end up becoming your place. You also need those new movers, to make up for the loyal clientele who moves away.
Fortunately, the good news, according to the Our Town America new mover survey, is that new movers are very interested in finding restaurants when they move in. You just need to make sure that you make it clear that you want them to find you.
Marketing to the New Homeowner
There are a variety of factors that appeal to any new mover when they move to a new city. When asked in Our Town America’s new mover survey for the reasons a city becomes their dream city, 33.1 percent of respondents listed “affordability” as being important, 59.7 percent cited “good scenery” as being important to them and 54 percent said “good weather.”
As for how the dining and hospitality industry did, over a third of respondents (38.2 percent) said that it’s important to them that the “restaurants are phenomenal.” In other words, if the restaurants are top notch, that helps make a city a dream city.
Market your restaurant as one that has phenomenal food and atmosphere, and if you can make it affordable, that’s all the better, at least judging from the results of the survey.
But the main takeaway from the survey is that Millennials moving to your neighborhood are as eager as you would hope to discover amazing local restaurants. The question that you should be asking yourself as a restaurant owner is –are you doing enough and are you equally eager enough to find new customers?