USA Today had an article on November 17, 2013, “Malls lure holiday shoppers with freebies” by Bruce Horovitz. The article got me thinking, could mall restaurants use the same concept to cash in on the holiday foot traffic? They certainly could!
Promotions to bring traffic to your establishment could be as simple as offering free bottled water, cups of coffee, or Wi-Fi service. Willing to go the extra mile? Offer curbside assistance with loading shopping bags into the customer’s car. The social media buzz and positive customer experience have value far exceeding the $100-$200 per day expense. This is marketing exposure hard to “buy.”
An effective promotion can maximize your profits during this critical season for the restaurant industry. It can also make your employees loyal and maximize employee morale with good tip income. However, it is important to properly staff your restaurant so it can deliver exceptional service even under the busiest conditions. This is not the time to skimp. Great food and great service will bring customers back after the holidays. It pushes the sale of gift cards since more than half of gift cards are never used, this is a profitable endeavor. The last thing you want is one-time new customers with a bad experience who both don’t return again and tell others about the bad experience. A bad review can go viral and negatively impact your bottom line.
We’d like to hear your ideas for affordable holiday promotions to attract mall foot traffic. What would you do to increase the bottom line of mall restaurants during the holiday season?