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5 Tips to Next Year’s Christmas Marketing

Thursday, November 12, 2015  
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5 Tips to Next Year’s Christmas Marketing

By Caroline Cooper & Katja Dehn, November 11, 2015

Is it a misprint? No, not at all. You really should be thinking about next year’s Christmas now. Let us explain.

Running a restaurant around Christmas time is a pretty tough job with bookings ticking in constantly and lots of tables to turn. An amazing time of year. However, next year’s marketing incentives are probably the last things on your mind at the moment. But right now, you have an amazing opportunity to really capture your guests and invite them to come back in the New Year – and for next Christmas as well.

Here are 5 things you can do to promote your restaurant:

1. Ask for customers' feedback

It’s always a good idea to ask your customers for their feedback. When you’ve served them, simply ask “So, did you enjoy your main course?”, “How was the wine?” or “We just bought these new chairs – are they comfortable?”

Capture feedback from your customers and if they’ve had a good time, you could ask them for testimonials that you could for future marketing campaigns. You should do this now while their emotions are still running high from their experience - not in three weeks’ time when everything is back to normal.

On the basis of this feedback, make a note of what you’ll repeat or build on for next year, and what you would do differently.

Read more: 8 tips to promote your restaurant’s Christmas menu

2.Take photos

Once you’ve got your decorations up, take photos of your restaurant in all its Christmas splendor while the decorations and the Christmas tree are looking their best – don’t leave it until half the needles have dropped off or the light bulbs have gone out. Keep an eye out for a clear, frosty morning and go outside with your camera to take some shots of a wintery scene. Or if it’s a product you provide, a good idea is to capture details or samples of your handiwork so you’ve got something to show next year’s customers.

3.Engage on social media

This is a perfect time to share pictures and updates, and get your customers involved in your Christmas events. Social media platforms are excellent ways to brand yourself – especially during the holiday season. Be active on Twitter and tweet about events or discounts and do the same on your Facebook page. On here, you can also add pictures of your staff looking all Christmassy and the before-mentioned photos of your restaurant’s decorations.

Your posts will create a sense of urgency and invite your customers to come by today. It will also create a buzz as your guests will mention you on their social posts, sharing pictures of their meal and status updates about how amazing your restaurant looks this Christmas.

Read more: Your restaurant’s social media – this is how it’s done

4.Offer something extra

Put something in place now that will be an incentive for people to visit you again in the New Year. What might be an irresistible offer that gets them into the habit of coming to you at other times of the year? Plan this now so you’ve got everything set up.

Read more from Caroline Cooper: A customer is for life, not just for Christmas

5.Most importantly…. Celebrate!

In middle of all this, there one thing you cannot forget to do. It’s a busy time of year with lots to do – and you deserve some credit for all the hard work that you and your employees do every day. So, take the time to celebrate your successes and give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done.

Caroline Cooper is a regular guest blogger for Planday. She’s also a speaker, author, trainer and consultant on customer service and customer loyalty. Caroline is founder of Naturally Loyal who specializes in helping businesses develop their teams to deliver consistently great customer service to retain more of their quality customers. She is author of “The Hotel Success Handbook” on practical sales and marketing actions for small hotels and of the free Ultimate Customer Service Guide which you can download here.

Want to know more about Planday?

Planday is an online and mobile shift planning app, making staff scheduling, time registration and team communication easier than ever. Planday is already delivering smart shift planning to the restaurant industry worldwide - and customers report on valuable time and cost savings.

“If I didn’t have Planday, I would have to hire more managers,” Emily Sparling, General Manager, Sophie’s Steakhouse & Bar. Check out the whole customer case video here and find out how Sophie’s Steakhouse & Bar has optimized the daily running of their restaurant with Planday. 

Click here to check out our website or click here to give Planday a try for free.

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