This Holiday Season, Cater to Your Customers.
The holidays are here, and your catering business is starting to take off. A catering menu is a great way for customers to get exposed to your menu and eventually return to your restaurant.
Whether its new or existing customers you are fulfilling orders for, remember the holidays are a special time. Our tips for maximizing each order is essential to bringing customers back beyond the holiday season.
Spread the Word
We can’t get over how many restaurants offer a catering or party tray menu but don’t publicize it. If you have a chalkboard or sandwich board at the front of the restaurant, add a blurb that says “Let Us Cater Your Holiday Parties”.
Keep a simple menu of your catering menu next to your register so guests can see it when they check out or when they are placing orders. If you are unable to add the catering menu to the main menu, add a sticker, insert card or note within your main menus that prompts guests to ask their server for more info.
List it on your website. By adding your catering menu and proper catering keywords to your website, it will be found by people searching in Google for nearby catering options. These are people that might not of even thought about your business as a catering option.
Don’t forget the power of social media. Share photos of your catering dishes on your Instagram and Facebook pages. Provide links with a call to action, like Order Now, Call Now, E-mail Us. Add a sense of urgency that people need to place their party orders early to ensure enough time for preparation.
Showcase Your Holiday Menu
If you have special recipes you make at your restaurant that are only available for a limited time around the holidays- you need to make this known. Add that sense of urgency again that there is a limited time or limited supply before you run out. Share this via all of the methods above.
If you are open on Thanksgiving and Christmas and offer your seasonal menu just on those days… look into boosting social media posts to get this information in front of more individuals. With so much content online during the holiday season… sometimes you might have to make small investments to get in front of more potential customers.
Package It Right
As mentioned in the first point, catering allows your food to get in front of not only existing customers, but NEW customers. Don’t make it a guessing game where the host ordered food from. Brand the packaging your food comes in. This is advertising for your restaurant and an opportunity that shouldn’t be missed.
It doesn’t have to be super fancy. You can purchase rubber stamps online in the shape of your logo and stamp handled bags that match your branding.
Stock up on logo’d stickers of various sizes. Place a sticker on top of lids so that nothing leaves your restaurant that doesn’t look like it came from your business.
Bring them Back
Don’t miss out on bringing these customers back after the holidays. Whether it’s a special event, new specials, menus, a coupon or anything else you would like to communicate, add it into the bags for your customer to hold on to for a later date.
If all else fails, remember to have fun and greet your customers with smiles. Its a hectic time of year… for you and them… remember to have fun. The season is too short. Resting is for January.