A few weeks back, we did talk about the necessity of never allowing your restaurant to fade away, continuously creating a buzz for the business. Restaurant promotions, whether you do it on a daily basis, weekly or even monthly, are effective ways to create such buzz. They’re wonderful ways to show appreciation to your regulars and at the same time attract new customers. Here are a few suggested ones that can liven up your restaurant as well as boost sales:
Live Music. Offering live music to your diners on a certain night is one great way to capture extra business. Music can range from a live jazz to local bands playing in your restaurant’s pub or bar. A piano player can also bring in a relaxed atmosphere to your dining room. The music you choose should match the theme of your restaurant and should cater to your customer demographic. If your restaurant is the upscale, quiet type with most diners in their 40s and 50s, blaring music might not go too well. But if your place is in a college town, a strident rock band could attract heaps of local students.
Happy Hour. Happy Hour is not just for bars, and is not necessarily done for only an hour, either. You can make it as long as you need it to be to get customers coming during lull periods. It increases sales during your off-peak hours, showcases your food and drinks at good value, and encourages customers to associate your establishment with “fun” and “value.”
Two-For-One Specials. People still love freebies. Offer your diners two food items for the cost of one. Keeping food cost in mind, let your chef in quality chef clothing design your menus so that you can control the outlay, maximizing profit as much as you can. Two-for-one specials are often availed by budget-minded consumers, so you can actually stick to simpler menus and do away with your pricey ones.
Open Mic Night. Live music is great, but you do have to pay for it. If you want to keep expenses to a minimum, offer an “open mic” night. Invite locals to sing, tell jokes, play music with any instruments, or just read poetry. People love to get on stage (or in front) and take their own magical time with the microphone, and you would be surprised at how many can turn up for these nights. The aspiring entertainers are often supported by their family and friends, so you can expect a busy night. Mid-week nights, such as Wednesday or Tuesday, are perfect for Open Mic Nights.
Sports Nights. Make the most of the sporting season by coming up with special promotions, like a Sport Night. You can have a Monday Football Party, a Superbowl Night or a World Series Bash and draw on untapped sales possibilities. You can offer dinner specials or drink discounts for these events.
Contests. Realize how everyone loves contests and the opportunity to win free gifts, and take advantage of it. Contests can range from naming a new drink your chef in smart chef clothing recently concocted to a simple raffle and games. Prices need not be expensive, and can be limited to a gift certificate for the customer’s next meal at your restaurant. Mugs or other giveaways can also make effective promotional gifts.