A lot of the stuff I write about arises from situations I see, hear or experience first hand; this one falls under the latter, and deals with Google Places reviews & Facebook Check-Ins for cafes, restaurants and other service oriented businesses.
Get ‘em while they’re hot!
It’s well known that the best time to get a customer to comment on a service you’ve provided them is when it’s right in front of them (or at least when it’s still fresh in their mind), so it makes sense that allowing someone to leave a review, comment or check-in while they are in your establishment is an easy way to a glowing testimonial.
Clearly, if this were to happen, most people would be using a smartphone – just like I was recently when I went to do the same at a cafe in Currumbin on the Gold Coast. Unfortunately, there was no mobile coverage, meaning I couldn’t leave a review of the rather nice club sandwich I was eating at the time.
So I got to thinking, how could you turn a negative into a positive? Well, first things first, let’s get an internet connection up and running, so that we can offer free wi-fi to your customers.
Yes, I said free. Because going to a cafe, buying a coffee and a ticket, for 30 minutes of internet time is an idea thought up in the 90′s. Where it deserves to stay. (If you’re thinking of charging for it – please, please, PLEASE don’t. Just don’t, OK?)
Now, there’s a few ways you set this up – but my recommendation would be to call your local IT company, tell them you want to set up a free wi-fi connection for your customers.
If they know their stuff, they should be able to install a device on your existing connection (if you have one, and want to use that), in such a way as it and the customer wi-fi are entirely separate – because you don’t want some smart 14 year old sitting in your cafe hacking into your back office computer.
Next, you want to be publicising that you offer free wifi, and publicise it hard. I’d suggest adding something to your both your Google Places and Facebook pages, and maybe team it up with a launch offer as well.
The goal here is bums on seats (no-one likes an empty cafe!), and getting those same bums to leave great reviews, check-ins and hey, maybe even writing a blog post about their favourite coffee shop!
Image Credit: thefoodgroup