India, with its rich and varied culinary traditions, has been experiencing a profound change in terms of how customers perceive food and the overall dining experience. With a substantial increase in the demand for dining out, there has also been a steep rise in food festivals and other events that bring food connoisseurs and restaurants together. Food festivals are becoming the go-to marketing tool for restaurants and eateries, not least because they bring about better exposure for their brands. They give restaurant brands the opportunity to get feedback on their menus’, spark conversations and give rise to new ideas for innovation. The result: higher customer engagement and brand loyalty.
Here are some of the most popular food festivals in the country!
- Palate Food Festival
- National Street Festival
- Sula Fest
- Grub Fest
- World Street Food Festival
- Asian Hawkers Market
- Great Indian Food Festival
- Food Truck Festival
- Dessertarian Fest
Having a stall in all of these is not feasible. Therefore, the first step would be to identify the right food festival for your restaurant brand. Get the details right, the available space, the audience coming in there, and so on to understand your opportunities better. To help you narrow down your choice,, here are a few advantages of taking part in a food festival.
i) Potential to reach new customers.
ii) Platform For networking with potential investors and business partners.
iii) Studying competitors and performing market research
iv) It also serves as a platform to enhance your brand name as a whole.
Let’s dig deeper into the food festival trend in the restaurant industry!
The Preparation Process!
While preparing to get your brand’s stall at the food festival, you need to follow this protocol!
- Permits and Licenses need to be taken beforehand.
- Research transportation and kitchen needs.
- Correct food preparation equipment.
- Prepare a small menu, including your best dishes.
- Practice your menu to ensure quick service.
- Prepare your staff for adversities
- Submit Vendor application on time.
- Ensure food safety and quality
What You Should Do At Food Festivals To Make Your Restaurant A Success
One thing you should take note of is that food festivals serve as a golden opportunity for budding restaurants. Restaurateurs who feel they are not ready to invest in a food festival have nothing to worry about. They can opt for in-house food ‘festivals’ or food tasting sessions which can bring new customers to their doors.
However, a food festival gives brands a fresh perspective on what is happening in the market and helps them get noticed. Another advantage that food festivals serve for the smaller brands is that they can network with suppliers, vendors and consultants.
Showcase A New Cuisine
To arouse interest, you should feature something new at a food festival! From introducing a new dish to trying new ways to present your food, all the latest strategies can be used when participating in a food festival. Here are a few things to remember:
- Proper planning on what new items to present for the entire duration of the food fest
- Preparing recipes beforehand to avoid chaotic situations later
- Presenting recipes in the most creative way
- Have variety at your stall!
- Make sure you have enough fun activities to attract customers!
This is where you can steal the heart of your customers. Successful brands generally offer their star dishes at an elevated price while at food festivals. What you can do to make your restaurant stall a hit is to make combos out of your bestsellers and dishes with lagging sales together, at a lower price. Offers like ‘2 for the price of 1’ or ‘Double Trouble’ attract customers and make them want to buy from you. Also, let customers choose their own combo options from a selection of dishes!
Adapted To Serve Lots Of People Quickly
Visitors to a food festival are different than the ones you see at your restaurant on a typical day. They intend to try unique food items and make their social media feed look delicious. Food festivals have become the perfect destination for food bloggers and social media influencers. Therefore, you need to understand the needs of a variety of target customer groups, before everything else.
Make sure that your dishes are practiced well enough so that the service time is quickened. One trick that you can use is to keep dishes that use the minimum time to complete.
Use Social Media Before The Event Too
Promote events you are participating in on your social media platforms, like Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp in order to engage customers. Since these platforms don’t cost much and have millions of customers always tuned in for information, they act as a powerful tool to spread the word about any such event.
Multiple platforms work differently when it comes to marketing and running campaigns.
Twitter: Make a hashtag related to your marketing campaign and share photos with that caption. Since Twitter has a limitation of characters for each post, use quirky and crisp captions with the hashtag to reach more people about your upcoming event.
Facebook: Create an online event on Facebook, along with a trailer video of the event. Ensure that you invite your customers to the event, only after you’ve made it look adorable. Let me show you an example!
Snapchat: With the introduction of Snapchat story, restaurant marketing has changed like never before. Events like food festivals gain huge popularity among millennials on Snapchat. Use your account to share live stories about the food festival. The new dishes you’ve introduced and create a buzz with the fun activities at your stall. The more your followers know about the exciting things you have planned for Day 1, the more they are expected to turn up at your stall on the subsequent days you would be present at the food festival.
Instagram: Instagram serves as a super tool for restaurateurs since people are searching for food pictures more aggressively now than ever. Share pictures of the dishes on display, related products, customer interactions, stands, and activities. Visual marketing on Instagram attracts future potential customers for your brand!
All in all, food festivals are becoming an irresistible way for restaurants to market their brand. While taking part in one , think of a creative methods to attract customers and ensure that you’ve followed the protocol at the venue. Once you’re a hit at these food festivals, your restaurant brand becomes more trustworthy among customers and can even gain a lot of attention on social media!