Sun | Dec 10, 2017

Dors' Fishpot restaurant capitalises on social media

Published:Thursday | August 24, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Melisa Lord of Dors’ Fish Pot restaurant and bar in Racecourse, St Mary.

RACECOURSE, St Mary:

For almost 30 years, Dor's Fish Pot restaurant and bar in Racecourse, St Mary, has been serving customers specialist seafood meals, but according to owner-manager Melisa Lord, the business has grown rapidly over the last three years, thanks largely to the benefits of social media marketing.

Lord, 32, says that while the restaurant previously focused on serving customers from the local area, after engaging with social media platforms such as (American travel website) Trip Advisor and facebook, the business now attracts a large number of tourists who use smartphones to find her small but tranquil seaside eatery.

She told Rural Xpress last week: "Before, we were mostly local-based, but social media has really helped us reach and appeal to a much wider audience, because we are now attracting tourists from as far as Montego Bay, Portland, and Ocho Rios.

"At first, I didn't even know we were on social media. It's only when some customers walked in one day and said, 'We found you on Trip Advisor,' and they went online and showed us a review written by tourists who had recommended Dor's because they liked the service.

"To be honest, I was astonished. But since then, I've been trying to find ways to keep improving our social media profile, so I made a facebook page, where I upload pictures and make sure everybody knows about our events and whenever we upgrade the business.

 

THEY WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER

 

"All I can say is that advertising works. Word-of-mouth marketing costs nothing, but is very important. Once you make someone feel comfortable, they will always remember and recommend you to other people. This is how information is disseminated so, in no time, you can get 10 new repeat customers just because of the recommendation of one person."

Initially, Lord was reluctant to work at the venue, but after her mother moved to New York in 2014, she was forced to re-evaluate her options and now looks forward to expanding the business.

She explained: "When I was 18 and 19 years old, it was a pain to have to ask a customer: 'Do you care for another piece of ice?' so my mother was the conversationalist. But when you look, see and understand where the business can really go, I realised that loving and embracing what you do makes all the difference.

"I've had to bend myself to focus on the customer service element and it really works, because people can buy rum and fish anywhere, but when you're able to strike up a conversation that makes them feel comfortable, that's a big plus."

rural@gleanerjm.com