As the song goes, special gifts for the 12 days of Christmas include wildly exotic gifts, homespun treasures and a partridge in a pear tree. Christmas marketing ideas for restaurants can follow a similar template for 12 restaurant marketing ideas.
Offer a Set Menu for a Special Price
Hosting a prix fixe meal during the holiday season is a great way to encourage customers to try your complete meals from appetizers and soups to luscious desserts. The special can run for the month of December or for as many days as you choose.
Two-for-One Meal Promotions
Often underutilized by restaurants but very effective ways to promote in-house dining with friends, bounceback two-for-one incentives encourage people to bring guests and larger groups to your restaurant during the holiday season. This marketing idea is particularly effective when offered to lunch diners who often eat alone or have never visited the restaurant in the evenings.
Offering a three-course special in December is a powerful inducement when diners can choose from several appetizers, soups, salads, entrées and desserts. The power of holiday marketing is that you don’t have to offer a big price discount to get customers to order a three-course special because you can promote the special as a perk that’s just available for the holidays. Few customers will actually average the prices of each course to see how much they’re saving.
4 Ways to Market Gift Cards
Gift cards can extend your holiday sales bonanza into the new year and encourage recipients to bring friends, family members and workplace associates with them because people seldom want to dine alone. You can market your gift cards in the following ways: :
- Start early : Set up a display in the front of the restaurant or at the cash register to promote gift card sales. You can include attractive packaging for the card that makes it a suitable gift for putting under the tree. Another alternative is to include a greeting card.
- Promote it on your social media : In 2018, the best way to advertise to your customers is with social media.
- Give them away! : Why don’t you offer a 10$ card for each 100$ card bought. People are more likely to give your restaurant as a gift if they receive a little something as well!
- Promotional Video : Filming a promotional video is a clever way to market your holiday events, seasonal menu and gift card sales. Film your chef preparing traditional holiday foods or special menu items that you’re going to serve. Post the video online at YouTube, on your website and on other social platforms to encourage holiday bookings and direct gift card sales. Include a link to the video in any emails and customer correspondence.
5 Golden Events
December is the ideal month to organize special events at your restaurant to get new customers. Try to find at least 5 events ideas. These ideas could include :
- A Christmas party at our restaurant for your customers
- Hold a Christmas brunch on the morning of December 26th
- Extend your open hours to accommodate holiday shoppers
- Invite musicians to play Christmas music in your restaurant in the evening
- Offering free coffees to customers on a cold winter day!
As for the contest, prices could be gift cards or free meals!
For 6 Orders made Online, Get One Free!
Create the opportunity for customers who are too busy with holiday planning to order at your restaurant through online ordering! With a promotion in the like of ‘’Order 6 meals online during the holiday season, get one free’’, people who can not make it to the restaurant will see themselves delighted. Many workers will like this idea for lunch at the office!
Seven Is For Luck
Why not do a little contest or a draw. Prices could be something as simple as gift cards. You could also go ahead and give something Christmas-related such as a bunch of sugar canes or chocolates. Give one participation per meal!
Provide Meals to 8 Percent of America’s Diners on Christmas Day
According to the National Restaurant Association, 8 percent of people are willing to eat at restaurants on Christmas Day. Your restaurant could easily earn record-breaking profits by offering a traditional or elegant holiday menu, Christmas brunch, dinner buffet or full-service dining from the regular menu. The 8 percent of people looking for dining venues include your competitors’ customers and people who have never tried your restaurant, and serving Christmas meals is an excellent strategy for attracting new diners. By the way, don’t forget Christmas Eve, when one in 10 people go out to dinner.
9 Decoration Ideas
Decorating your restaurant is a must during Holidays season! Here are nine ideas for your restaurant :
- Dress your employees in red and white
- Put on Christmas lights
- Put on red, green, silver or gold tablecloths and napkins
- Make a Christmas Tree in the dining room
- Put some Mistletoe and Christmas wreath around the restaurant
- Print Holiday pictures and images on your take out boxes
- Paint your windows with winter sceneries
- Make your shift managers wear Santa Hats
- Show off your customers’ wish cards at the front of your restaurant
Reserve For a Group of 10 and Get a Gift!
Motivate groups to come at your restaurant during the Holidays by offering a special gift to groups of 10 people or more! For example, you could go ahead and offer desserts free of charge with a purchase of 10 meals!
Start Promoting by the 11th Month
Whichever idea you choose, is important to start promoting it from November at the latest. People book their schedule for December somehow rapidly, just like your restaurant does. You want to make sure they will keep a moment to come eat at your restaurant!
Selling Pastries by the Dozen
The holidays are great times to gear up for bakery sales of pies, cookies, candies, pralines, chocolate éclairs, brownies, blondies, cupcakes, muffins, cheese straws and pastries. You can sell these products by the dozen in attractive gift baskets and boxes to ignite holiday sales. You can even offer mailing service for out-of-town customers or charge for deliveries of holiday food gifts within certain mileage limits.