Community Management


Word-of-mouth is becoming obsolete and how your restaurant brand handles itself on social media can determine everything from foot traffic to consumer loyalty. Of course, food quality, service and profitability/unit economics need to excel too, but it’s a mistake to believe success should only be based in these. Community management and your
digital reputation are deciding factors for first time guests and go hand-in-hand with your return rate.

Community management is one of the most direct and accessible ways to reach your guests. While most of the communication for this area errs on the side of reputation management—given its powerful, direct-to-consumer chain link—it would be wise to
take another look at the retention possibilities for your customer base. Retention aids in converting first time guests into repeat customers, while personalized responses and engagement strengthens your online community.

Community management is seen as an extension of social media marketing. And yes, they do involve some of the same elements, such as a representation of your brand on social media. But there are some differences. Simply creating a Facebook page can be
considered a form of social media marketing, so let’s draw a line here to get an understanding of the distinctions between these two disciplines.

Community management involves the attempt to cultivate, nurture, or engage with a given audience. For example, if a brand is posting on social media with the intention of building an audience, this technically counts as a form of community management. On the other hand, social media marketing involves using social media to promote your business.

Realistically, social media marketing is more of an extension of community management rather than vice versa.

So, how does a brand execute great community management efforts? Having a set of guest retention and customer attraction strategies in place are a surefire way to be successful. Today’s, social media communities adopt and align with the way millennials are naturally speaking to one another, even if you’re not talking directly to millennials.

Leveraging your customer attraction and guest retention strategies with content strategy, beautiful food photography, and engaging content; your brand’s differentiation within the restaurant space is a recipe for success. Additionally, communicating with personalized responses to your guests’ concern is valued and remembered by your social followers—
As a result, your brand’s reputation is elevated. Currently, brands invest a large amount on guest acquisition, so if they aren’t doing everything possible to the spread that cost over repeat visits, the brand’s profitability suffers dramatically.

In today’s transparent and collaborative digital communities (where engagement is more than a buzz word, but a mantra), guests are fully aware and on-the-pulse of the best brands who take the time to hold their attention on social. Customers love to see their favorite brands “get it” when it comes to social dialogue and content. When social retention and attraction elements are found in your social dialogue, first time visitors become regulars and your brand’s social community organically grows with positive return rates.


Jeanette Castaneda and Dreambox Creations
Dreambox Creations is a digitally-inspired, full service advertising agency based in Los
Angeles, California, with over 18 years’ experience working with more multi-unit restaurant brands than any agency. Jeanette is part of their dynamic digital team as lead copywriter; she has written brand-centric messaging for the industry’s most impactful restaurant concepts and collaborates daily with creative teams to produce content that supports clients in their brand-positioning goals.

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