Restaurant branding is all about the experience. From your marketing to your menu to your main courses, your restaurant branding communicates to people about who you are and what people should expect from you.
For a restaurant, everything from the taste of the food, the attitude of the staff, to the style of the decor needs to work together to create something memorable.
This restaurant branding guide will assist you in forming and strengthening your own brand. We will cover what you need to consider as you develop your brand, what makes branding successful and how branding can influence a restaurant’s reputation. It is like forming a strong and valuable relationship with customers.
If you are a restaurant owner, contact Big Unit, the best branding and digital marketing agency in Dandenong.
Define Your Restaurant Brand
Branding means building an identity. To do so, you must clearly know who you are as a brand. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Who are you at a restaurant?
- What is your purpose
- Whom are you targeting?
Think about what matters to you and how your restaurant operates in the marketplace. Explore the story of how you got started and what your goals are. The answers to these questions will help set the foundation of your brand. Remember that your restaurant brand will represent who you are, and your strategy can only start once you know the answers to the above questions.
If you do not have one already, focus on writing out a mission statement and a list of values. A mission statement is a useful way of defining your restaurant’s goals. You will also have to answer why’s of your work. Your core values will identify your central beliefs, which will act as a guide for your restaurant so everyone can work towards that mission.
Having a mission statement will not only help in the initial phase of brand-building but also in the overall growth of your restaurant. By following your mission, you will set yourself apart from competitors, build trust with customers and create a brand that offers consistency.
The Brand Personality
Your brand has a personality. It will look a certain way. It’s mission, goals, values will talk a certain way. This is how your customers will emotionally connect with your restaurant.
Just think of your restaurant as a person. How do they speak? What things are they interested in? Are those for fun or really serious? Excited or calm? Together, such traits create your brand personality, which you can infuse into all facets of your restaurant.
Just for instance, take whole foods. What comes to your mind about their characteristics? Whole Foods is home-grown, honest, and healthy. They are also environmentally engaged. As you can see, the brand personality comes through easily as what you are known and remembered for, it is the impression that your brand leaves on the minds of the people. Our team of branding experts take care of every aspect of the branding and then initiate the process.
Your Market Space
It is the crucial question for any new brand: How are you different? As you begin to define yourself, you get to know your competition, too. We define your brand through in-depth competitor research which helps in creating a unique brand. Our experts at The Big Unit look into every digital space where you can market your product be it Instagram, Facebook or any other channel. For effective branding, it is important to look around in the market, city and elsewhere and see what other restaurant owners are doing. Conduct research about their company, cuisines, and their brand experience. Use them as an inspiration to develop ideas that set your brand and restaurant apart from the rest. When looking at the competition, ask yourself the following questions:
- What are the visuals like?
- What is the mission and what are the values?
- What are the target customers?
- What do the customers want?
- How do customers respond to the brand?
Brand loyalty is vital for your restaurant. Initial steps: hype of the brand. It is the continuity that has the power to make or break a brand.
This is the reason you must understand your customers well. Engaging in customer service, paying attention to reviews and learning from your patrons are essential factors to building and maintaining a brand experience.
Understanding every point of interaction with the customer, and making sure that each one reflects your identity. For instance, an environmentally-conscious, fast-casual restaurant that does not have a compost bin might raise eyebrows. Similarly, a child-friendly or a pet-friendly restaurant that does not make reservations may also be an odd choice for families who do not want to spend a long time waiting with young children or their pets.
Develop Your Brand Identity
Restaurants have many points of customer interaction, right from placing reservations to waiting in line at the door to the visual experience of the restaurant’s interior. Each of these interactions can be used as an opportunity to build a brand, but they need to be very clearly connected to one another.
Now, let us take a moment to expand on these opportunities:
Before customers even set foot in your restaurant, they are likely to come into contact with your restaurant brand through your website or social media page. Here, they will have an initial introduction to the visual style and your menu.
When customers arrive, the exterior reveals the style and defines the tone of the restaurant. The exterior also typically has signage with the logo, typography and brand colors and font.
Inside, a host or cashier will greet a guest. The interior design continues to convey the tone of a restaurant.
Once seated, customers will see the menu or simply sit down to enjoy their food.
Developing A Design and Building Your Brand
Designing assets will help in connecting all the elements that create a brand identity and your core brand assets.
Let us understand it with an example of how the key design elements inform each other in restaurant branding. We can take a look at Sweetgreen’s brand. Sweetgreen is a salad chain. It caters mainly to a lunch, work crowd. Who is Sweetgreen as a brand? It is a fast-casual brand who wants to connect people with real, visible, directly sourced ingredients. It places an emphasis on how they would like to influence people to eat healthily and stay more aware.
With all of the above, their choice of clean, spacious, all lower-case type makes a lot of sense. It shows simplicity, directness and honesty. Talking about the color palette- the tone of green, white, muted and organic. The imagery on their menus in-store, the application and the website are all part of robust branding. Once you have a brand identity in place, make sure you create a style that guides you and makes sure all your design elements communicate the message to the customers in a clear and effective way.
By now, you might know that branding is not just about design. The brand voice is an integral part of your brand identity because it dictates other style choices.
So, for instance, if your brand voice is corporate and buttoned up, you would want to stick to a traditional font. In case your brand voice is loud and bold, you would want to build a bold and a loud colour palette that would harmonize with the rest of the theme.
Typography covers the fonts and the design. The typography sends a message to your audience about who you are as a brand and what they can expect by working with you. Ensure the fonts you choose are in conjunction with your brand personality.
Colors are powerful. People strongly associate with colors. Defining and using the right colors is also a part of branding. Colors should be such that it tells a story and people remember your brand. Strategically used colors inspire specific thoughts, emotions and reactions with your audience. Branding experts at the Big Unit take care of everything and select the colors accordingly.
Right images forge a deep emotional connection between the customers. From billboards to Instagram, websites to print ads, images communicate with your potential customer. Ensuring right images represent your brand in a true light.
To know more about restaurant branding, contact the Big Unit, the best branding Agency in Dandenong.