The Ultimate Guide to Text Message Marketing for Restaurants

Text Message Marketing for Restaurants
Table of Contents

Benefits of SMS Marketing for Restaurants

Text Message Marketing Examples for Restaurants

Restaurants are one of the toughest industries out there—the high level of competition leads to the failure of many establishments. In fact, the restaurant industry has some of the highest failure rates. Making sure your restaurant survives beyond the first year is a huge challenge. Trying to make it successful on top of that is an even more difficult task.

While there are several marketing channels for establishing brand awareness, text marketing for restaurants is one you can’t go wrong with. Every restaurant’s priority involves converting one-time visitors into loyal customers. You can successfully achieve this by building customer loyalty.

Therefore, you should devise a marketing strategy focused on customer loyalty. Text message marketing for restaurants is actually one of the better ways to further advance your customer loyalty-building efforts. Its convenience allows restaurants to reach far more customers at a fraction of the cost. And in comparison to other marketing channels, text message marketing is far more efficient, thanks to its high open rate.

Marketing constitutes an important part of any business endeavor; however, a full-blown marketing campaign for restaurant owners can be costly. Restaurant marketing on social media can end up costing business owners a fortune, which is why trying to do it within your budget is a good idea, and SMS marketing is just the tool for that.

Benefits of SMS Marketing for Restaurants

SMS marketing campaigns come with an abundance of advantages. This kind of marketing is almost foolproof. You either reap the benefits of SMS or you get marginal profit (or none at all) without taking a financial hit. That being said, here are the main advantages of restaurant text message marketing campaigns:


Statistics show that the vast majority of mobile phone owners use SMS every day. People receive an average of 30–40 texts per day. This means that text messaging is ideal for exposure since customers regularly use their phones and receive texts. Customers read 97% of messages within 15 minutes, meaning you can almost guarantee that people will read your texts.

High Open Rate

Text messages have the highest open rate of any communication channel. With an astounding 98% open rate, people are definitely going to see your text message. The second closest in terms of open rate is email, which fluctuates between the 20–30% range. This goes to show that between SMS and email marketing, you should opt for SMS to ensure customers read your message.

Instant Delivery

The majority of SMS messages are delivered almost instantly—with the exception of technical issues with your bulk SMS provider. What’s more, people read 90% of text messages within three minutes of receiving them. And while email can also be delivered instantly, they do not get the same response rate as SMS messages.


If you are on a budget, SMS marketing is the go-to tool for you. Not only does text message marketing boast affordable pricing, but it’s also one of the most efficient means of marketing. Considering its efficiency and price, the margin of return you are going to get on your investment is very high.

Unlike most businesses, restaurants do not need full-on SMS marketing campaigns since they can be pretty costly. Thus, it makes complete sense why it is popular among restaurants.

Global Outreach

One of the reasons SMS is widely used in marketing comes down to its ability to reach everyone across the world. Of course, in this context, sending text messages to people all over the world doesn’t make sense unless your restaurant is a global franchise. For that reason, you need to have a specific target demographic, which is ideally location-based. This will help you attract the right customers to your restaurant and avoid spamming people with irrelevant content.

Text Message Marketing Examples for Restaurants

Restaurants can use SMS marketing templates for a variety of purposes, like promoting menu items, tracking online orders, or even sending automated texts. Here are a few to get you started:


“Hey [customer name], thanks for dining at [restaurant name]. We can’t wait to see you again. Take 10% off of your next order using this coupon. [coupon]”

Limited Offers

“Quick! Buy a fresh donut from [restaurant name] and we’ll give you a free cup of coffee. Offer only valid for the next 4 hours.”

Reminding Upcoming Events

“Will we see you at tonight’s open mic? Swing by [restaurant’s name] for delicious food and stay for the awesome music—today from 6–10 p.m.”

Customer Reservation

“Hi [customer name], your table for 4 is now ready. We’ll hold it for the next 5 minutes.”

Customer Surveys

“We appreciate your visit to [restaurant’s name]. Please take your time to rate our quality of service and food following this link.”