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A Restaurateurs Guide to Christmas Advertising

No matter the time of year, it’s never too early to be thinking about next Christmas when it comes to your business! In particular for the hospitality industry, or if your business sits within the food & beverage world, Christmas is a cash cow for restaurants, bars and pubs so it’s important to start planning for it as early as possible – in fact many places will already have their festive programme ready to go almost a year in advance.

Restaurants need to make up for the lean years in recent times, so it is vital to get your share of the market nailed down. And for those who are ahead of the game, rest assured they will have the most successful Christmas of all.

Christmas advertising ideas for restaurants

Christmas restaurant advertising is crucial to let the public know what you are offering as early as possible for the busiest time of the year. Whether it’s work parties or family events, people love to book things in early and get as much information as they can to make an informed decision on their Christmas plans. Check out our top Christmas advertising ideas for restaurants below:

Provide details on your opening days and times
It’s never too early to decide when you’re going to be open over the Christmas period. Will you be offering Christmas dinners on 25th December this year? Or will you be closed that day, but opening on Christmas Eve and Boxing Day for people to book their family or work events? Talk with the relevant stakeholders at your business, and get these details nailed. Once you have done so, why not have a professional poster printed displaying these details and pop it in your restaurant window so that your regular customers have this at the forefront of their minds? This is a simple but impactful marketing method.

Use banners to grab the attention of passers-by
For the members of the public who are the planners of their family, friendship group or workplace, placing posters or banners in the street with your Christmas information is a great way to grab their attention. They will likely make a note of the information they have seen and return to your business at a later date. If you’re a venue which is lucky enough to have lots of passing traffic, don’t miss this opportunity to bring the message home with outdoor banners.

Produce flyers to distribute to local businesses
Creating bespoke flyers that contain details of your restaurant and Christmas offerings and then dropping them off at local businesses or call centres is a great way to advertise your business. You could include an incentive where if they book so many places, there’s a discount or the organiser goes free.

Create a unique marketing tool
Other than the usual flyers and posts on social media, how about something fun that will get your potential customers talking, like bespoke Christmas crackers? Drop these Christmas crackers off at workplaces around your local area and include an offer that they can’t refuse for their Christmas work party! It’s guaranteed to make your business go with a bang.

Personally invite people to your restaurant
Send out personalised invitations to businesses in the area or loyal customers, inviting them to a launch event at your restaurant to highlight your new Christmas menu. It needn’t cost the earth – it could just be a mince pie and a glass of mulled wine but doing it in summer will definitely raise a smile – and your business profile.

Send out giveaway packages
For example, your restaurant might be renowned for its wonderful chocolate cake dessert, so why not drop off mini versions in personalised cake boxesat offices in your area to entice them to make a Christmas booking. Giveaways help build relationships and create happy and loyal customers – which is of course what everyone wants.

Think outside the box with your offerings
If you feel you are operating in an over-saturated market and all of your competitors have a similar offering, ideate with your workforce to come up with something new and exciting. How about a Christmas barbeque or an Aussie-themed party – channelling a festivity on the beach vibe rather than the usual Christmas theme.

Shout about festive packages
If your restaurant is in a hotel, why not create a package that includes a couple of nights’ stay with entertainment, gala dinners and a whole host of other activities? Or, if your restaurant is in the high street, join forces with other local businesses to create fun festivities. For example, is there an art gallery or arts and crafts store nearby? You could combine your specialities and offer an evening of food and creativity to the public. Who wouldn’t want to make their own Christmas cards while eating a delicious dinner!

Collaborate with local charities
It is worth contacting a local charity to see if they are interested in putting on a festive fundraiser. It could be the start of a relationship which will bring in events all year round so always think about building relationships for the long term. Pick a charity close to your heart and build a genuine relationship with the people that volunteer there. There is no greater way to advertise your Christmas activities than through helping others.

Christmas party advertising ideas

If you’re a venue that is going to be running party nights, then those Christmas advertising ideas must be a key part of the plan. Below are our top Christmas party marketing ideas to consider when planning a themed event at your restaurant:

Advertise your evening programme
You may be running themed nights, tribute acts or a whole host of events – in which case you need to make sure that you’re highlighting your offer to the right audience. A brochure with your whole programme in is a great way to start, which can be left strategically placed on your bar/counter or at a hotel reception.

Use leaflet distribution to advertise your party theme
Your party idea might get lost in the depths of social media, so simply posting about the themed evening on Facebook may not gain the reach you would hope for, so getting through the doors of your local area is crucial to advertise your party.

Don’t limit your target audience
Think about events like breakfast or lunch with Santa where parents can bring their youngsters. It’s a good opportunity for bringing in some extra revenue at a time of the day when you may not be quite as busy. Drop off your flyers at local schools and nurseries and see if they will distribute them to parents! You could even offer them a discount on an adult party night out for their help.

Create a daytime party for those planning work events
Advertise via social media and traditional marketing methods to let local businesses know you are holding a party during the day! This way, workplaces don’t have to choose between evening family meals and drinks with their colleagues.

Christmas is the busiest time of year for everyone, so getting your restaurant advertising sorted as early as possible will make things much easier, and more efficient, for your business.

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