There is always something new being introduced, no matter what industry you work in. The restaurant industry has a constant revolving door of new food ideas, new design concepts, new drinks or desserts. With the constant change it can sometimes seem daunting or even unimportant to stay on trend. I mean, what’s the point when next year or even within the next 3- 6 months things are just going to change again? It can seem like a lot of work to change the menu and figure out new concepts, but there are actually a few benefits to keeping up with the times. Of course, you definitely need to weigh the pros and cons and see which trends line up with your restaurant’s brand, but you should know what the trends are and take them into consideration, and here are some reasons why.
Increased Social Media Presence: When you have new menu items, you want to share this to your social media accounts. It is an opportunity to show your audience that you are relevant, that you have new things for them to try, and you can even use it as an opportunity to boost your following. When you add new menu items, have your followers tag their friends and share it to their social media account for a chance to win a free meal. This gets people interacting with your account and boosts your visibility. You can also have people tag you when they try it for another chance to win a gift card or brand merch.
Competitive advantage – When you keep up with trends and add new items, you are able to keep up with the competition. If you never add new items and don’t pay attention to what customers are wanting, you are basically disqualifying yourself from the competition. Again, it is not reasonable to jump on every trend, but there is always something new your restaurant can add to stay in the game and keep customers coming back.
Boost Revenue: If you are looking for ways to increase sales, (I mean what restaurant owner isn’t) adding trendy food or drink items can be a great way to boost your revenue. Customers are usually willing to pay more money for unique items or a fun dining experience that is not the norm. Get creative in what you serve, how you serve it and how you market it and watch your profits begin to rise. Customers want an experience now more than ever, and are willing to pay for it. Even if you are a quick service restaurant, you can still offer high quality shakes, grass fed beef, or have up-to-date technology that elevates their experience. There are so many ways to incorporate trends, it’s just up to you to decide which ones will work best and how you want to execute them.
So while it does take some extra time and effort to implement new trends, it can prove to be worth it. Remember to look for trends that align with your restaurant, see how you can add your brand’s special touch to it and then begin putting it out on your social media pages for all to see. If there is an item that is a little different but you feel like it stays true to your brand, that could be a great option for bringing in new people who don’t normally eat at your restaurant. Remember, you want to add items that will bring value to your business. If there is a trend you don’t believe will add value to your bottom line, enhance the experience for your customers, or help you add potential new customers, then it’s probably not the one for you.