There’s no hiding it; times are tough.
The cost of living has increased for everyone, especially hospitality businesses, and with the depths of winter looming companies are needing to get the most out of every penny.
We think a great place to start is by analysing your marketing strategy – here’s what you might be missing:
1. Read the room.
Yes, everything is expensive and no one has money. But while this may mean business could slow (particularly in hospitality), there are still ways to get customers through your doors. Everyone is looking for the best value for money, so deals and bundles will look more attractive than ever. Having a regular campaign on the go, like a bottomless brunch on slow days, could go down a treat. With major holidays like Christmas, turn your marketing budget up on those gift voucher sales too!
2. Get creative.
Those energy bills aren’t going to pay themselves, so why not… turn the lights off? That’s what this Cornish pub does on Monday nights; they save electricity while providing a beautiful candle-lit atmosphere for diners. The novelty got people talking, which saved them on marketing too! Not only did their quietest night become more profitable than ever, but it was also talk of the town.
Not ready to turn the lights off just yet? Simply switching to energy saving lightbulbs could make a noticeable dent in your energy bill, and to your waste as they last longer than traditional bulbs. No one will notice the change – although, why not shout about it and let your customers know how you’re helping the environment? Plus you’ll be doing your wallet the world of good, which will help anyone working in hospitality!
People may be going out less often, but giving them a reason to get out of the house could be the key. In the hospitality sector, consider offering dinner and a show – like hosting a quiz night, karaoke or live music once a month. It will bring bigger groups through your door, and the more you do, the more word will get around. Especially if the atmosphere and service you’re providing is ace, the lagers will keep flowing through the night.
If your establishment is open during the day, you could try a board games corner or a second hand book exchange to encourage customers to stay longer. It won’t cost much to set up, and would make your place more sociable and attractive to those looking to kill some time between meetings or classes.
4. Get back to basics.
Reputation is everything! Increasing word-of-mouth would be the ultimate way to strengthen your hospitality marketing strategy, which can be done by making your brand more personal. The goal is to turn your pub into someone’s regular. This could be done on social media, by producing more video content about the owner, the staff and behind-the-scenes. But it could also be done on-site by friendly staff members making guests feel welcome, and remembering the regulars. Building a rapport with customers naturally leads to brand loyalty, and uses no budget at all. It could quickly lead to five-star reviews online, so don’t forget to ask customers for a review!
5. Make yourself different, not cheaper.
Competition is getting fierce in the hospitality industry. But instead of fighting to be the cheapest, it could be worthwhile to simply set yourself apart instead (after all, you can’t compare apples with oranges). Offer more value for money by promoting how you’re different, which could be a deal you offer or a service you provide. It could quickly become the defining feature of your brand, which would be worth personalising on your social media pages too.
Need a nudge in the right direction with your hospitality business? We can help! Get in touch today to discuss your business goals with our experts.
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