Restaurants are the ideal places to host events since they already have two of the most important items required, namely space and food. As opposed to your typical customers, people in large groups would most likely spend more per person. This is because when people go out for meals as groups they are usually commemorating or celebrating something, and are thus prone to ordering more. Therefore if you are not catering for events you may be missing out on extra revenue.
As the festive season begins, ensure your restaurant is event ready by implementing the following suggestions.
Rethink your space
Start by assessing the space you have and figure out if there is a section that you can partition into a private room. If you don’t like the idea of permanently closing off a section of your restaurant, you can have retractable partitions that only close when the room is in use, thereby keeping your restaurant relatively the same until you have an event.
You could also consider allowing customers to book the whole restaurant for their event, closing it off to the public for that particular time.
Remember though that a lot of people don’t mind having their gathering in the open area of your restaurant. Some would actually choose your restaurant because they love the ambience and the chatty atmosphere created when other customers are around. Some may choose to dine there because of who they might run into, and closing them off in a section by themselves won’t work for them. The key is to set up your restaurant in a manner that allows you to cater for each client’s needs.
Spread the word
Once you have decided on your setup, you’ll need to inform customers that they can have large groups or gatherings at your restaurant. Start by putting up posters inside and outside the restaurant. Use whatever space you may have to advertise your offering. This may include writing on the windows or putting up signs on the street outside the restaurant.
You can also distribute flyers in the neighbourhood. Partner with nearby businesses such as hotels, barbers, beauty parlours or retailers, depending on the places your customers frequent, and ask them to allow you to leave some flyers in their reception areas for their customers to read.
A lot of companies periodically organise team outings or entertain their business partners, so you can get more bookings by selling your event space directly to them. This would mean going to them in person or inviting them to view the space. As with all changes to your restaurant, remember to update your digital media pages. This includes your website, review sites as well as social media pages such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. In addition, you could run an email campaign, informing your customers of your event offering. This is a good way of reaching new customers and reconnecting with people who have used your services before, and are on your mailing list.
Hosting events can give your restaurant a new stream of revenue and boost customer loyalty. In addition, it can also help to increase your brand awareness resulting in more foot traffic into your restaurant.
Brand and communication expert,
Copywriter for Napkin