It’s summertime, summertime, sum-sum-summertime! Just saying the word “summer” immediately boosts your mood, doesn’t it? Think about that, your customers are in a better mood and want to get out more, meaning; they are counting on YOU to keep them happy. That may seem like a pretty heavy responsibility that you have to take on, but the good news is that you’re a pro and you can handle it! You just have to prepare properly. Consider the four options below in an effort to prepare your restaurant for summertime!
1. Try a simple loyalty program by passing out punch cards with a prize that expires after Labor Day. Birthday giveaways are also a great add – who wouldn’t want to return to the restaurant that surprised them with complimentary ice cream on their special day? These are all things you can start now during your busy time that will assist you in staying profitable well into those slow months.
2. E-mail marketing. If you’re a Restaurant.com Partner, you’re already a step ahead because we provide you with a list of your customer’s email addresses. Do you have an outdoor beer garden, provide live entertainment, or occasionally host a bags tournament? Whatever your summer attraction is, you have a list of people WAITING to hear about it. Let them know what they can expect at your restaurant in the summer that they didn’t see the last time they came in. Throw in a little hook such as a half-price appetizer or a complimentary drink and you’re sure to lock in their interest. Today, your customers WANT to hear from you and are looking for a reason to get out of the house. Send them a message and be that reason!
3. Match the mood of your audience. Do the decorations and music change based on the season? If not, they should! Looking for the perfect song? “Summertime, Summertime, Sum-Sum-Summertime”! Your customers want to feel the vibe you’re putting out and want a place to call their “home away from home”. Not everybody can afford a vacation over the summer, so try and give them as close to the experience as possible. Fresh flowers, sunlight, and a tropical soundtrack will let your customers take in what you offer and convince them to stay longer and want to return as a repeat customer.
4. Your audience wishes for lighter dishes. This is summertime, the months of eating comfort food are behind us. Dishes with fresh fruit and cool taste on a hot day are what customers are craving! We, as customers, are stepping outside of our comfort food, so we need you to step outside of your comfort zone, too. Can you prepare fresh guacamole at the table to add to the atmosphere? Can you include fruits as “sides” instead of “fries” so the customer doesn’t have to make that decision? Can you name your items accordingly to what they will do to your customers? For example” the “six-pack steak”, the “looser pants luau salad”, or the “man-boobs brisket burger”! Ok…maybe that last one isn’t a good idea, but you get the point!
We’re all excited for summer and hope you are too!