Birthdays. Everyone has them, almost everyone wants to celebrate them, and most importantly, birthdays can mean big business for your business.
Whether it is driving revenue growth, customer satisfaction, or the all-important customer acquisition, industry data shows that birthday marketing yields a 250% lift in revenue compared to standard marketing.
Many restaurants already offer something special if a customer comes in and tells them that it is their birthday (and if you don’t, that is definitely the place to start). Whether it is a free dessert, glass of wine, or entrée, it’s a nice gesture with a relatively small cost that can generate a lot of good will with customers.
Assuming that you’re willing to offer something to people for their birthdays, you can get even more out of it by actively promoting it to your customers. If someone knows ahead of time that you will do something fun for their birthday, they are more likely to choose your restaurant for a celebratory meal that will include others as well. A birthday celebration and a larger group will typically mean more appetizers, drinks, and desserts and a larger check that that more than outweighs the cost of whatever freebie you’re providing. Not only will your customers leave feeling good about you, you will benefit financially.
Word of mouth promotion of your birthday perk is a great start, but your birthday freebie can also be used as a way to drive business all year long. If you use your birthday perk as an incentive for people to sign up for your email list (e.g. join our insider program for a free entrée on your birthday), not only can you email them a birthday gift to use within a certain number of days of their birthday, you can also use your email program to bring people into your restaurant for other promotions, special occasions, and events.
Finally, since you know your birthday perk works with existing customers – generating more revenue and growing your relationship – why not use it to build relationships and bring in new customers? Since everyone has a birthday, publicizing your birthday perk can appeal to a wide range of new potential customers. You’ll introduce yourself to them at a time when they’re already happy, and you’ll be likely to win a customer for the rest of the year.
So, whether you’re first considering offering a birthday perk or have one that you’re ready to get more out of, remember that birthday marketing and birthday perks are a great way to generate more revenue, more loyalty, and more customers.
For tips on how to publicize your birthday gift, or on how to better market your restaurant, email the author at mfrankel@HULEDET.com.
Michael Frankel is the CEO and Founder of HULEDET (www.HULEDET.com), a New York based company that drives customer acquisition and retention through birthday marketing.