‘Tis the season! The holidays are in full swing with Christmas less than three weeks away. As a restaurant owner, December is your busiest time of the year. Your business provides people an opportunity for a hot meal that they are often too tired and stressed to cook themselves. If you need some ideas for restaurant holiday promotions, we’ve got six suggestions for you below:
Gift cards: These gift cards make a great “stocking stuffer” for anyone in your family. Whether the recipient uses the card for an anniversary dinner or a quick bite to eat for lunch, the gift card helps create relationships with new customers and helps maintain relationships with regular patrons. You can also add an extra incentive for the gift giver during the holiday. For example, if they buy a $50 gift card for someone, they receive a $10 card to use for themselves. That way, multiple people get access to your delicious food in a single transaction!
Dine-in specials and holiday menu items: As we mentioned above, cooking regular weekday meals during the holidays can be draining and time-consuming. Most of the free time people have after work during December is spent at the malls or shopping centers. To draw people in, your restaurant can offer new dine-in specials for lunch, dinner and weekends. These restaurant holiday promotions are especially crucial for the kids menu as shoppers might have their families with them. If your restaurant is close to a shopping center, you could even offer a discount if the party shows their purchase receipt from that day’s trip to a local store. In addition to the dine-in specials, your restaurant can also add a limited holiday menu with items such as eggnog-themed cocktails, a special three-course prix fixe menu or Christmas cookies and other desserts.
Giveaways and contests: Social media is the perfect avenue to directly engage with your customers. With the season of giving upon us, why not run a series of giveaways and contests on those channels throughout the month of December? Many businesses have taken to Facebook and/or Instagram with the 12 Days of Giveaways concept in which they choose 12 items or packages to give away for 12 days. The items and amount of winners you select is your discretion, but giving your customers something to look forward to for 12 days can have a lasting impact on their view of your brand.
Mail or Email Holiday Messages and/or Discounts to Your Regular Customers: Take the time to gather the contact information for your most loyal customers and send them both a message of holiday greetings and a one-of-a-kind discount thanking them for their patronage. In the flurry of generic promotions and holiday ads a special message from their favorite message could be a very delightful surprise.
Holiday/Family Movie Nights: If your restaurant is geared towards family and large gatherings and has more than a few TVs, you should consider hosting Holiday Movie Nights at least once or twice throughout the month of December in addition to these other restaurant holiday promotions. The nights could include one to two kid and family-friendly films, discounted meals for the kids, dinner and drink specials for the adults and maybe even a visit from Jolly Ole St. Nick!
Catering/Takeout Specials: Gathering together with family and friends does not just happen on one day, but all throughout December. While some families enjoy preparing all of their meats and sides for a home-cooked meal, most people appreciate the convenience of delicious food delivered straight to their door or available for pickup. If your restaurant offers catering or takeout, this time of the year could be incredibly profitable. In addition to your usual menu, try and throw in some unique items pertaining to the holiday season.
We hope these six ideas for restaurant holiday promotions have been helpful for you and your staff. If you would like to hear more about how SIDEKICK can help your restaurant boost its online presence, click HERE to speak with one of our solutions experts.