Posted on October 14 2019
Seasonal décor may keep the air festive and merry, but frenzied holiday shoppers are hungry for more than a cheery atmosphere. Since the holiday season is the foodservice industry’s cash cow, restaurants need to be pro-active to get a sizeable slice of the dining market. Stay ahead of the holiday dining competition and guarantee return business all winter long with these smart promotion ideas and savvy marketing techniques.
Types of Restaurant Holiday Promotions: Holiday promotions should boost sales and bring value to customers without simultaneously slashing your margins. Shoppers are in a celebratory spirit, which means they’re more open to spending. With October already in full swing, it’s time to start planning your promotions and creating memorable experiences for loyal and new customers alike.
Gift Cards: During the holidays, gift cards offer customers a quick solution for appeasing even the most difficult to shop for. Restaurants can skip the cost of plastic and opt for virtual gift cards instead, which are much easier to share and are a better choice for last-minute purchases. Plus, including a “reserve now” link will make it easy for customers to take advantage of reservations. Sales tend to drop off in January, and though gift cards are pre-purchased, guests who redeem them can boost post-holiday revenue in way of cocktails, tips and order totals that exceed the gift card amount.
Return Deals: Get even more out of gift card sales by offering a “gift for you, gift for me” deal. For instance, if a customer purchases a gift card of $50, they will receive one for $10 on the house. Another option is to offer a complimentary appetizer or dessert with a gift card purchase. Discounts may create a sense of drumming up business; instead, offer something that drives return sales and makes customers feel appreciated.
Catering Services: With the holidays comes the influx of group celebrations. From corporate parties to family reunions, there are a multitude of opportunities to employ your catering services. Drive sales by letting your guests know these services are available. Consider private reservations at times when business is slow, or bring your menu to the guest with off-site event services. Take advantage of post-holiday celebrations by offering special deals on your catering services during the winter months.
Loyalty Program: Loyal customers are more than just regular diners – they’re your brand enthusiasts. Reward them with extra incentives available only to program members. Keep them coming back by offering free menu items on their next visit. Also, reward new members with a complimentary dish or beverage just for signing up.
Limited Time Menu Options: From holiday treats to seasonal soups, it’s easy to whet customer appetites by offering something new. Create a delectable holiday menu with distinctive seasonal fare that will motivate customers to dine at your restaurant because of the limited time it’s available.