Consumers tend to go on a spending spree around the Holiday period that leads to lower restaurant sales at the beginning of the new year. Between gifts and travel and the allure of going out with people you seldom see, plenty of people feel tight on cash by January. This could make them feel like dining in more often, but not if you use some smart tactics to change their minds. You can finance dramatic improvements to your business with restaurant funding, increasing its appeal in a “New Year, new you” sort of way. Consider the following 5 tactics to smooth out the seasonal bumps many restaurant owners see at the start of the New Year.
FOMO (fear of missing out) can create strong incentives for people to patronize your restaurant. If they aren’t feeling like spending money on eating out in the New Year, it could be because they have a “been there, done that” attitude towards your menu. Rekindle their excitement with juicy, limited-time specials. You can employ creative ideas like mixing regional food styles, such as creating a saucy curry-based pasta dish. Or, you can include things that make people’s mouth water, like adding lump lobster meat to a cheese-based dip. Post photos of these specials on social media, and advertise them heavily at your locations to earn more interested diners.
Pop ups are all the rage, which has led to a few restaurants becoming a weekly hotspot with their special “pop up” menu options. For example, the Top Knot restaurant in Dallas, TX hosts an “Uncommon Ramen” night every Monday that asks local renowned chefs to reinvent the popular dish. Hosting weekly themed specials increases the odds that your restaurant becomes part of the routine for some people and top-of-mind for others when looking for a place to eat during a given week day.
People with food allergies and special dietary needs feel more welcome at restaurants that openly advertise their use of food restrictions. Nothing can be a more powerful draw than a call to action for someone to “Try Our New Vegan/Gluten-Free Menu!” Even if all you do is aggregate existing menu items into a specific spot, the change can be enough to rekindle interest. You can also earn referrals from groups who share tips on how to eat within their dietary restrictions.
Many people don’t go out to eat in January simply because it’s too cold to leave the house! Help them have a night in by expanding your off-site dining options. This can include a partnership with a third-party food delivery service like GrubHub or Uber Eats, negating the need to hire a fleet of your own drivers. You can also promote take out options, including the ability to order whole dinners at once like many BBQ or family style restaurants offer.
New specials and menu options are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to kicking off the New Year. You can commit to reinventing your restaurant business by dreaming up ambitious projects and then making them happen with the right restaurant funding. Click here to start securing the financing you need to make improvements, strengthen your business model, or just smooth out seasonality when you apply for a free, no-obligation quote today. ARF Financial offers access to low rate loan products with fixed terms up to 3 years. With a streamlined approval process, you could have your funds released in as little as 3 to 5 business days, so start now!