5 Must-try Vegan Marketing Strategies for Your Restaurant

In any business, marketing is a crucial part of your strategy. After all, you need to draw customers to your restaurant! For new restaurant owners, though—or those who are only just beginning to focus their attention on marketing—the world of promotion can be an overwhelming one. Nevertheless, you can effectively drive potential customers to your vegan restaurant. Whether you enlist the help of a contractor marketing agency or take a DIY approach, there are strategies you can implement to start utilizing SEO, social media, and other digital marketing efforts to advertise your plant-based brand.

1. Draw in omnivores.

Of course, your target audience is primarily vegan or plant-based customers. However, in most locations, at least, you’ll be hard-pressed to find enough locals with a vegetarian or vegan diet to support your restaurant over time. In that case, you should find ways to target non-vegans as well. You might do this with a special

“Meatless Monday” deal, or Lenten specials for omnivorous Catholics in the spring. You can also create vegan versions of favorite “normal” foods to show how comparable the dish without animal products can be. Try vegan mayo and other options from brands like Only Plant Based to create the perfect cruelty-free take on everything from poultry to cheese.

2. Appeal to customer compassion.

When someone turns to plant food, they’re more than likely passionate about animal rights. You can appeal to this natural sentiment by incorporating cute animals into your marketing strategy, whether that’s fluffy cows or baby goats. Consider, for instance, Dawn dishwashing liquid, who’ve used ducklings and other creatures in their advertisements and packaging for some time. Animal lovers will naturally turn to these items, often without realizing that Dawn is not a cruelty-free company, after all. Where your restaurant is concerned, though, you’re using cruelty-free, vegan ingredients in your menu—you can showcase adorable animals in your ads guilt-free.

3. Partner with a worthy organization.

Of course, including animals in your marketing efforts will help draw in those who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet. You can take this marketing strategy a step further, though, by actively supporting or working with an organization that works against animal cruelty. For example, you might donate a percentage of funds from a particular night or specific dish to a local animal shelter or work with another organization to host an event. Your marketing contractor can help you take your efforts to the next level, making a real difference even as you build your brand.

4. Consider other diets.

Your restaurant features vegan food, but that doesn’t mean you can’t include dishes that accommodate other dietary needs, too. For instance, you consider adding some gluten-free vegan dishes or a few sans-sugar. Likewise, try low-carbohydrate dishes or some that are free from the top eight most common allergens. In this way, you can market your plates to your primary vegan clientele, including those who might have further constraints to contend with.

5. Build a community.

Your marketing team or contractor will inevitably turn their attention to local SEO, a marketing strategy focused on local search engine results. One great way to enhance these efforts is to form a group in your local community that’s focused on animal welfare and vegan eats. You could also expand these efforts into online vegan groups, ensuring new customers whenever your online fans are in the area.

Running a vegan restaurant means you’re ultimately a business owner, so analog and digital marketing are crucial parts of your leadership strategy. Whether you hire a contractor to kickstart your marketing strategy or aim to learn the basics on your own, techniques like these can skyrocket your brand, introducing more and more customers to the joy of vegan food.