Editor's Note: A previous version of this this story has been updated to include comments from Margaritas' director of social media.
Margaritas Mexican Restaurant, a 23-unit casual dining chain based in Portsmouth, N.H., is trying to increase its Facebook fan base with a promotional giveaway for “liking” its restaurants.
In its Margaritas Summer of Love promotion, each location has specific targets for the number of “likes” it needs to get on the social networking site in order to give back “love” in the form of free food.
If the first target is hit, all Facebook fans at that location get a free appetizer. If the second target is hit, they receive a free entrée, and if the third target is hit, they get two free entrées.
The promotion runs through Aug. 31.
On Sept. 1, a coupon will be posted on each local Facebook page offering whatever free item that particular location qualified for. They will be redeemable on Labor Day weekend, Sept. 2-5.
Most of the locations currently have fewer than 1,000 fans.
Mike Caldwell, the company’s director of social media, who joined Margaritas in January, said the chain started the promotion at the beginning of August with 23,866 fans spread across the 23 individual Facebook pages set up for each restaurant last year. If each restaurant meets its first target, Margaritas will have a total of 27,850 fans. If they all reach their free entrée target they will have 32,300 fans.
“So far we’ve picked up about 1,400 fans,” he said.
It is the chain’s first major Facebook-based promotion, he added.
Margaritas operates restaurants in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut and New Jersey.
The locations and links to their Facebook pages can be found here.
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