Empower your restaurant marketing: break the apology habit

4 min read
Jan 31, 2023 7:00:04 AM


Your brand promise is the cornerstone of your growth strategy and it’s what drives your marketing plans.

It all starts with a guest leaving an unhappy review on a public website. In the past, your only option was to respond and apologize in that same public forum, which is never a good thing for your reputation.

So it’s time to stop apologizing and start upselling.

We look at how modern restaurateurs can remove the root causes of unhappy guests and comp costs by 40%, so that marketing campaigns focus on attracting guests who will have positive brand experience.


Managing reputation management

Most restaurants receive feedback from less than 1% of all their guests, through social media and review sites. That’s a tiny sample size, that can be a misleading grouping of people who are sharing either the most positive or extremely negative experiences.

Restaurant marketers are left trying to retain unhappy guests and reduce the negative effect of them sharing their feelings online. It’s an important task, but it is thankless and almost entirely reactive. 

The unstructured sentiment provided by review sites and social media is often frustratingly difficult to make sense of.

Marketing teams are often left with lots of questions such as:

  • When did this person visit? 
  • What did they eat? 
  • Who served them? 
  • What else was happening in the restaurant at that time? 
  • Was it a bad day for our teams or a larger issue? 
  • Did any of this even happen?

And without being sure of what the problem is, how do you identify and solve the root cause? 

As a result the process of feeding back to the operations teams is frustrating for both sides and without surety important changes are frequently not resolved. 

Your business is left guessing when trying to fix the underlying issues. Are your guests unhappy because of the menu, parts of the menu, the suppliers, the quality of the kitchen staff, the speed of the front of house staff, are they as unhappy as the reviews suggest (they’re not)? 

There are hundreds of things that make up a great customer experience. How often do you and your business discuss questions like this without having the information needed to make confident decisions?

You are left to deal with what happened, but you are limited in improving the actual problems and ensuring your brand promise is delivered every time.


Seeing the full picture

Unhappy guests are just people not receiving your brand promise – what if you could manage that?

What if you actually had the ability to fix the root causes of those complaints? What if you really had a clear understanding of what your guests are experiencing? What if you could be certain of the causes? What if you could be sure that operational changes could be made?

The answer = Find out what the majority of your guests are feeling.

Silent and Vocal Majority

Current customer experience management tools only help you deal with what has happened, Yumpingo helps you fix the problem before it appears online. 

You need an experience management process that enables you to:

  • Gain enough coverage to give you confidence that you know what is really happening.
  • Ask the right questions in a structured way (not solicit unstructured feedback). 
  • Ask questions that are specific to restaurants because the experience is so unlike any other business.  
  • Create actions and workflows that can be implemented across the business from head office to your service teams.


5 steps you can effectively deliver your brand promise

Delivering on your brand promise is essential for creating loyal customers and building a positive reputation.

Here are five effective steps to ensure that your brand promise is being met in practice:

1. The customer leaves an unhappy review after their meal including their email.

2. You can now respond with the knowledge of what they ate and experienced, where and when, to provide a great service.

3. You have provided an outlet that stops the customer from needing to share to a wider audience.

4. Meanwhile the GM fixes the root issues highlighted in their Smart Actions.

5. The same thing happens across the estate and you can see the number of unhappy guests reducing.



Reputation management is important, but there should be less of it. 

By offering a better route for feedback and fixing the root cause of unhappiness, you’ll reduce the complaints and be confident that you are delivering on your brand promise. 

We’ve shown time and time again that using this method you can improve the overall experience to reduce unhappy guests by 40%, retain more customers, reduce comps and increase online reviews.

Get in touch with us to find out how we can help you. 


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