Before starting any restaurant promotions, it is important to evaluate your business and try to determine what will work best for your restaurant given its location, customers, and menu offerings. It is also important to consider your profit margins on food and beverage before deciding what kind of discounts you can afford to offer.
Keeping regulars coming back is important for any business, especially a restaurant. Having a loyalty program helps to ensure that there is an incentive for them to keep coming back. One common example is point cards, where money spent equals points that they can use on future purchases. For instance, every pound spent at the restaurant is worth a point, 100 points may equal 10 pounds that the customer can use anytime they wish towards their bill. Another example would be a lunch special, have a lunch ticket stamped at each purchase of a meal, come in for nine lunches, and the 10th lunch is free or offered at a heavily discounted rate. This will also help to make sure you keep employees of nearby businesses coming to you on their lunch hour.
Offering a discount that will increase marketing is a fair trade off. In today’s market a large and positive online marketing for restaurants is the key to success. Offering a small discount to customers who post a picture of their meal or drinks and tag the name of your restaurant is an easy, cheap and one the best restaurant marketing strategies there is.
Heavily discounting items is a great way to get people in the door. But that doesn’t mean that you want to give the house away either. Heavily discounting menu options like small appetizers and soups, can help get people in the restaurant, and small food options like appetizers and soups generally are not the only thing people eat, they will probably order other things off the menu as well. One classic example is offering a salty appetizer, heavily discounted, because the customer will surely need to get a pint or two go with it. Fun restaurant promotion ideas will go a long way. Half-off pretzel bites anyone?
It’s always a good idea to offer restaurant coupons and gift cards. They give the people who receive them a reason to come to the restaurant, and possibly spend more than what was on the card. And even better, sometimes the cards get lost or go unused, in which case they are essentially free money for the restaurant. Offer a discount to people who buy a certain amount’s worth of gift cards. Maybe offer tier discounts, the more they buy in gift cards, the better what they get in return is.
There are certain times at every restaurant that are always slower than others. Restaurant owners need to identify these times and come up with ideas for something to do during these times that could help boost the flow of customers, like 2 for 1 restaurant deals . Creative restaurant marketing ideas like weekday happy hours on drinks and appetizers is also a great example. Pub trivia can help get people through the door on a slow Tuesday or Wednesday night. Staying open late on weekends and offering a limited late-night menu is a good way to get the hungry crowds leaving pubs to stop in for a snack and for a night cap. Effective restaurant advertising will go a long way in getting rid of the slow restaurant hours.
Events that draw crowds like concerts and sporting events are a great way to bring in business that may not frequent your area. Using the best advertising for restaurants is a great help during opportunities like these. You can give discounts on appetizers or drinks for people attending the event who show a ticket to server. This will make your restaurant stick out to people unfamiliar with the area who are hungry for a deal. Anticipate rushes before and after the event, with people being in a bigger hurry before the event.
Offer customers a fixed price meal for say two and include items that they may not usually order. For instance, two appetizers, two entrees, and two desserts for a set price. In order for it to work as a deal, the set price has to be slightly lower than if they ordered all those items on their own. This encourages customers to order extra dishes because they are getting a deal for them.
It is important to pay attention and track how these restaurant discounts perform. You don’t want to spend too much time offering a discount that is not doing its job.