Easter can be one of your most profitable weekends of the year, especially if you market your hospitality venue right. After all, the Easter industry is worth billions; Americans alone spend over $17bn each year over the Easter weekend.
But with thousands of your café or restaurant competitors all vying for customers, you might need to get a little creative.
And so, with Easter 2018 fast approaching, we wanted to share a few promotional ideas we’ve picked up from clients, seen in the media or heard about from our hospitality friends.
1. Host a scavenger hunt
Transform your venue into a magical kingdom with little more than some decorations, a photocopied treasure map, mini Easter eggs and a smile.
Print out flyers and promote them around your local neighbourhood, in your window and near your POS terminals. Tell your customers all about it at every opportunity and up-sell it through your regular marketing channels.
Then watch as enthusiastic young families come strolling up to your venue on Easter Sunday, or whenever you decided to hold your scavenger hunt. It doesn’t have to be a scavenger hunt either. You might prefer a host an egg-painting workshop or an Easter egg tasting.
2. Sponsor an Easter-related event
If hosting a scavenger hunt or Easter event seems like too much effort, you might prefer to sponsor an event instead. Supporting an event held by your local sports club or church or a family park picnic will give you good brand recognition and kudos from your local community.
The beauty is that it’s so simple. Just call up a few organisations hosting events and ask if you can pitch in with money, food, drink, help setting up. In the process, you might network with some great people and establish key relationships too.
3. Add Easter specials to your menu
By far one of the simpler promotions is to give your menu a little tweak for Easter. This could involve adding a few Easter Specials (themed or not, that’s up to you) to your a la carte restaurant menu or some homemade hot cross buns to your café counter.
Get a Demo Today
4. Hold a social media competition
Holding a social media competition is a win-win. Doing so will boost your social media audience and engage potential customers much more.
The great thing about social media competitions is that you can get people through your door. Say your café or restaurant is in an idyllic location. Hold a photo contest at your venue and make people come to you to enter the competition.
You don’t have to go all out on a prize. $100 or a free meal should be enough to generate some buzz.
5. Work out what your customers do over Easter
Here’s a simple example: your hospitality venue is near a church, which is jam packed with worshippers attending midnight mass. Consider the foot traffic and see if you’d benefit from staying open late that night.
Also consider your venue’s proximity to retail stores that will do a booming trade that weekend. Use the assets at your disposal, like leaflets or social media targeting, to let the stores and consumers know you’ll be open and raring to go.
Working out what people do over Easter can help you roster more effectively, alter your hours to maximise traffic and manage your kitchen’s coping zone.
6. Donate your profits from Easter Sunday to an aid organisation
Since Easter is, after all, a Christian holiday, why not celebrate the resurrection by donating your profits to a group like St. Vincent’s or the Salvation Army.
You’ll be doing a great deed, and you might get nice PR as a result. Of course, it pays to promote this on your blackboard or somewhere prominent, and to your social media channels, to let people know about your goodwill.
7. Get into the spirit of Easter
The main aim with any of these approaches is to be seen getting into the spirit of Easter.
Just as no one likes a Grinch at Christmas, no one likes a bunny killer either, so embrace and savour the festivities. Hopefully, customers will appreciate it and you can reap the rewards.
If your hospitality venue is located in an area with lots of foot traffic, why not hire someone to dress as a bunny and hand out eggs on the street over the Easter weekend?
The fact is, you don’t have to put all your eggs in one basket. You can implement more than one of these tactics to good effect. Easter is a fun time and hopefully you too can have fun while enacting these creative Easter ideas.