After a busy holiday season, the start of the year can often feel a little dull for bar & pub owners, managers and their staff. But what January lacks in excitement, it makes up for in opportunity. So, if you want to get ahead, use this quieter period to focus on tasks that you generally set aside during busier times of the year. Here are our top 4 bar and pub tips to get 2018 off to the right start.
Knowledge of the bar industry standards, best practices and suppliers should be second nature to any good bar & pub manager. But that isn’t all. Having a comprehensive understanding of your customers is key to achieving your core goals. The most successful bars, pubs and businesses in general have a customer-first mentality rooted into their culture. So, before you do anything else this year, go on a journey of discovery about your ideal customer. Be persistent about finding and understanding your target audience.
Research everything you possibly can about them; what makes them tick, what makes them choose one bar or pub over another, what kind of place are they looking for, what do they enjoy the most (i.e., live music, trivia games, social media engagement, etc.), what makes them come back? Feedback is essential. Once you’ve got enough information, determine your final persona, your ideal customer, and build the right customer relationship and experience for them. Give your patrons more than just drinks! The more enjoyable and innovative your bar or pub is, the more successful it will become.
If you want to attract, engage and keep customers, change the way you promote your business to embrace mobile marketing, social media and online promotions. Focus on your audience and get ideas from your customers, define your goals and set realistic targets. If you want to reach larger audiences, a social media campaign including attention-getting hashtags, providing discounts or promoting drink and food specials will keep people coming back. You can get more marketing ideas for your bar or pub here.
In December last year, Real Business reported that 31% of businesses admit to being slow to adopt technological innovations. 15% of those businesses cited lack of time as the cause. You could use this January as an opportunity to research technology, with a view to improving your bar or pub all year round. For example, a solution such as Dine by Promo Pads, Europe’s first custom tabletop ordering system for pubs and bars, could help you solve queuing and slow service problems, which, according to recent stats, are some of the most common reasons for bar and pub complaints. How does Dine work? A digital menu is located on each table in your bar or pub and linked to a main tablet behind the counter, so customers can order direct, without leaving their seat. When using the Dine ordering system, the time taken to place an order is being shortened, leading to shorter queues and more orders. By freeing up staff from taking orders from customers, Dine allows them to become service “ambassadors” and better attend to other customer requests. Sounds great, right? You can find out more here.
Training your staff is one of the easiest and most efficient ways to reduce staff turnover and increase customer spend. Make sure you train your staff to easily identify upsell opportunities such as side dishes, spirit doubles, etc. – and your profit margin could sky rocket! Create career development programs for an increased sense of loyalty amongst your employees. By helping your staff complete a course, providing paid training leave or paying for their training programs, you will maximise retention while also reaping the benefits of your staff’s new, improved skills.
What are your top tips to getting 2018 off to the right start? We’d love to hear from you. Please comment below or share this post to get the conversation started!