6 Ways for Chefs To Build Your Customer Community

31 Dec 2030 (Tue)

From the feedback we’ve received from our chef community, we understand that many of your are looking at your options and starting to plan how you will deal with the implications that this pandemic has brought from both an operational and economic standpoint.

Using our expertise we wanted to answer some of the questions and challenges you have been faced with. In our last blog, we outlined the 5 key factors you need to consider when setting up a delivery service.
We’ve seen the most success from chefs pivoting their service using a grassroots approach and ingenious ways to overcomes some of their challenges. 
Once you’ve got your set up sorted, how can you best find and grow your customer base? 
Here are six helpful ways to build and grow your community

1.   Create a WhatsApp Group

The beauty of this strategy is that as well as building your customer list, it gives you a chance to make new friends and engage with the people who live in your neighbourhood.  
We thank Shalom Shungula, (@vegansushibristol) for his ingenious idea of creating a Whatsapp group to be the communications centre for people interested in his delivery service.  Link to his profile
This is such a great idea because people on the list can invite their friends, plus everyone sees the feedback from happy customers and then they may well want to order in the next delivery round too! 
Your Delivery Service Whatsapp Group will be the main hub for customer contact, here you can keep your customer list, announce your menus, advise delivery days and have a 2-way chat with everyone who has expressed an interest in your delivery service.
So how can you best get people to join your Whatsapp Group?
Here’s how!  

2.   Invite Your Friendly Neighbourhood 

Many neighbourhoods have set up WhatsApp groups for their street or groups of streets, has yours got one? This is the first place to try.  If you’re not sure, try asking around, and if you don’t think you do – you could even set one up. Local WhatsApp groups are also a really nice way to support your neighbours and share in the goings-on of the crisis.
If you do have a local group – simply send a text to the group, let them know you are a private chef, that due to the crisis you’ve decided to offer your best and most popular dishes as a delivery service. Invite anyone interested in what you have to offer to join your Delivery Service WhatsApp group, where you will post the menus. Include a couple of your best photos in the text to entice them!


3.   Parents groups

Do you have kids? If you do, the chances are that your children’s class has a WhatsApp group, or a Facebook group, or an email group, or possibly all 3!  Let them know what your plans are, and invite them to join your WhatsApp group too. Remember to include your story – this is a time when the public generally really want to be supportive, they will like to see that they could benefit from some delicious food at the same time as supporting your small business. If your friends have kids, ask them to let their groups know about you too!


4.   Nextdoor App

This is an app that connects people living locally – download it and join your local group! Here people message each other with questions, offers, services and to sell things locally – it’s a perfect place and it’s also completely free to use.  


5.  Other Facebook local groups

There are so many – get your post ready, with your personal story and if you have a particular cuisine as your speciality then start finding and joining groups local to your area. 
There will be foodie groups, mum’s groups and local groups about the area you live in.  If you offer a specific cuisine – look for them as well. For example, if you are planning tray bakes of lasagne and pollo cacciatorre, find local Italian groups or Italian people living in your area.


6.   Tag @ehochef!  

We will share your posts on Instagram in our stories and feeds, and we’ll geotag the posts that it shows up in feeds in your area.  We are not asking for commission for bookings you receive through our social media, though we will start to encourage customers to post general requests on our platform for deliveries, this way we hope to support chefs in all areas so that people from all over can start to post their request to eho chef, and if we find a chef in the area we are looking for, we will inform you in the usual way.
Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us, either via our WhatsApp group (text 07385 291217 and ask to join if you’re not already a member of the group) or by emailing foodies@ehochef.com.

We want to use our expertise and knowledge to help support you, our community until we’re ready as a platform to offer services again to the public.

We’re continually looking at how to provide the best support to our community so please answer our survey so we can better understand your needs. CLICK HERE to jump to survey.
Good luck with delivery service and remember to tag us into your Instagram posts!

Our other blogs for chefs;
Creating a successful social media strategy to promote your services - Part 1
Creating a successful social media strategy to promote your services - Part 2
How to launch your own home delivery service- 5 Step Guide
Food photography tips- how to get the best out of your camera phone
Ready to get your dinner sorted?