Do's And Dont's of Facebook for Small Restaurants

It’s possible to build a strong business with committed customers using nothing but Facebook for marketing. I know because I’ve done it and it’s easy.

In my view new food outlets should try this as their first priority because Facebook allows you to focus on exactly the right customers effectively and speak to them socially whilst they are relaxed and open to your approach.

Facebook is especially suited to small traders who can be genuinely sincere.  This is harder for the PR departments of bigger chains to get right since it's all about creating authentic engagement and not about polished corporate messages.


Do and Dont's


Do Gather lots of great photos showing your restaurant and people having a great time. (Learn how to use your camera properly, you can improve your skills fast if you read a book on simple technique.)

Do learn how to use and target paid for Facebook boosts (this is easy)

Do post at least once a day with generous, sincere content.

Do always be on the lookout for interesting things to post

Do use concise, friendly language without business jargon

Don’t reveal any problems you have in your business

Don’t use Facebook to advertise for staff or whinge ever. It shows weakness

Don’t reply to negative comments unless you’re ready to be contrite. If they’re genuinely malicious (perhaps left by jealous competitors) other users will know and they will not hold them against you or you can delete them silently

Don’t use Facebook to post special offers and promotions. People don’t want to be sold when they’re being social. It’s a big turn off

Do use Facebook to post free recipes or other generous, sincere ideas for others to share with their friends, this will grow your audience fast

Don’t be puerile or childish

Don't use expletives

Do be scrupulously polite, especially in the face or criticism

Do be fun and interesting (hint — people aren’t interested in you, they’re interested in themselves so give them something they'll appreciate)

Don’t only post in order to get something back. Give generously and you will receive

Don’t take credit for things that go well or for positive comments. Just say thank you for the privilege of serving such nice customers

Do tell everyone you’re having fun

Don’t post when you’re in a bad mood

Do post when you’re in a good mood

Do remember that the most valuable part of Facebook is the attention you get and the permission it gives you to speak with your customers so that they tell their friends.  This permission is a true gift and you’ll find it can be remarkably powerful

You can start to do all this long before you open the doors of your new restaurant so what are you waiting for?