The most wonderful time of the year is just around the corner and this can give your restaurant a great opportunity to include the holidays in your marketing strategy. Whether you're planning for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or trying to include all three, there are so many steps that you can take to include every holiday season in your advertising, in your menus, and in your specials. Not sure where to start? Keep reading to discover some of our tips for effectively marketing your restaurant during the holiday season.
Promote your indoor experience
With the weather turning from mild to cold over the next few months, it's time to shift away from your outdoor dining experience and emphasize the fun of dining indoors. If your restaurant has a theme or a special decoration design on the inside, emphasize this in your advertising to get people excited to eat inside your restaurant. Take advantage of the holiday season by adding some decorations to your dining room. Whether that includes ghosts and pumpkins in October or Santas and Christmas trees in December, bring the holiday spirit to your customers while they dine with you.
In addition, make sure that all extra COVID safety precautions that are being taken to keep your restaurant clean are clear to your customers. If you have a special policy that customers have to follow regarding masks or vaccinations then be sure they know about it before coming. Inform them of the extra cleaning and sanitizing that will be taking place to make them feel safe dining in your restaurant. People are excited to be able to go out and eat again, so, make their experience as great as possible.
Promote your holiday specials
Every holiday allows for some creativity on your menu and with your pricing. Create a whole holiday specials menu filled with holiday-themed items and give them a fun name to create some buzz around your menu. Give your customers the taste of the holiday season with pumpkin, cranberry, or peppermint flavors included in food items or special drinks. Create some new and fun holiday cocktails that will pair great with your menu items. You can include holiday-themed menus on every table as well as adding them to the website to bring the spirit every time somebody visits your webpage. You can also offer special prices or combo specials on these holiday items or add a weekly holiday-themed night to your restaurant schedule to get people in the holiday mood.
In addition, try running a holiday-themed contest or hosting a party to invite guests into your restaurant. Offer gift cards as prizes, bring in Santa to take some pictures, carve some pumpkins, or give back to the community with a Thanksgiving food drive. All of these special events can create buzz around your restaurant and encourage people to share their positive experiences. There is so much that you can offer around the holidays to bring in already loyal customers as well as intrigue new customers.
Holiday Email Marketing
Something that would be nice for your customers to receive is a promotional special from your restaurant in their email. Email marketing is one of the best ways to personally connect with your customers and you can communicate to them that you are running a promotion, educate them about your offerings, or inform them of new services, items that you are selling, etc. Include some pictures of your restaurant, or just send some holiday cheer with a message of well wishes during this season. You can include coupons, promo codes, or advertise your holiday specials in these emails to draw them into your business. This can get your name out to new and existing customers and connect with them directly. If you’re interested in exploring email marketing as a service for your business this holiday season, reach out to us here.
Add some holiday cheer to your online advertising and website
One of the most common places that people will go to find information about your restaurant would be your website and other online platforms, like social media. You should take this opportunity to integrate some holiday-themed advertisements into your online presence. This could include wishing everybody happy holidays with your social media posts, writing holiday-themed blogs for your website, adding some festive graphics to your homepage, or drafting holiday-themed newsletters to send out to your customers. Online platforms can also allow you to share images of your restaurant getting in on the holiday fun. Post pictures of your employees dressed up, showcase some of your holiday menu items, share a video making holiday cocktails, or share images of your holiday events.
These next three months are filled with all kinds of holiday cheer that your restaurant can be sharing with its customers and the community. Not sure where to start integrating the holidays into your marketing plan? Contact us here at Skigital and we can help you out!