With Valentine’s Day being the second busiest day to dine out in America, it is important to take this opportunity to show some customer appreciation and love. Many restaurants and larger chains will be offering discounted rates on meals or complimentary items. At Dining Alliance we understand that that may not be possible for independent restaurants. Another way to make the most out of the holiday is to stand out from other restaurants by incorporating special touches to making your customers Valentine’s Day just a bit more extraordinary.
Here are five tips to make your customers Valentines experience a memorable one without offering free or complimentary items
Set the tone
A nice romantic setting can improve a customer’s overall experience. Create a more intimate space for your customers by providing them with roomy seating so they have privacy. Instead of basic rows of tables for two, consider adding easily removable partitions between sections to give the effect of more private dining without compromising your space. Companies like Mood Media even offer customized playlists and lighting to accentuate the romantic mood.
Specialty Dinner/ Drink Menu
Many restaurants will be offering specialty menu pricing and complimentary bites during the holiday, but you can make your menu standout with creative dishes. Whether it’s heart shaped bread or sultry cocktails, your customers will appreciate every little detail to highlight Valentine’s Day from their first drink order to their dessert. By creating your own unique spice blends or taking advantage of pre-cut fries, you can showcase a menu reflective of your scratch kitchen by also saving on labor costs.
Give them a beautiful digital moment
Customers can remember their Valentine’s Day with their significant other as well as your restaurant by providing them with monogrammed glasses set on their table. Highlight your restaurant name and year, and automatically, your restaurant serves as a tangible memento in their photos. You could even have Instax cameras available and your waiters can grab a photo of couples that they can take home at the end of the night or you can give the glasses away to patrons as a take-away momento. If you want to keep the glasses, they could be used at other memorable holidays throughout the year or private events like Mother’s Day or private birthday parties.
Encourage Repeat Patronage
When it come to Valentine’s day, restaurants are fighting for a lot of competitive business. Let your customers know that you appreciate them choosing your restaurant by giving them a coupon or a heavily stamped loyalty card that they can use towards a free drink or appetizer if they come back in the next few weeks.
Singles Night Outing
Who said Valentine’s Day was only for those in relationships? Host an event at your restaurant to attract the not so sought out crowd on this day- those who are single! Maximize your bar sales by offering similar buckets of beers and large format drinks for singles to take advantage of as a way to meet people.