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December 2021

4 Restaurant Holiday Promotions and Marketing Tips

by incentivio
Tis’ the season for last-minute shopping, decorating, and a little bit of chaos…right?
The restaurant environment has drastically changed in response to the ongoing pandemic, and operators have had to adjust their marketing strategies to succeed in this new dynamic. After all, according to a datassential survey, 86% of operators added online ordering during the COVID-19 pandemic and planned to keep it. With the new variant, datassential’s recent survey report “Omicron Rising” suggests that the industry should continue to expect cautious behavior as 65% of consumers reported they prefer to order online or via drive-thru vs. dining in-store.
So what are operators waiting for? It’s time to take advantage of the digital guest experience, and what better time than the holiday season! The current circumstances have forced restaurants to drive holiday sales in creative ways, helping families stay connected and create memorable and safe experiences. We’re here to help by showcasing four holiday promotion ideas to boost engagement this season.

1. Maximize the Digital Guest Experience Using a Mobile App

70% of consumers prefer to order directly from a restaurant instead of a third-party delivery platform. On top of this, the average order placed online is 30% higher than orders placed in person or called in.
Online ordering has become a normalized restaurant experience; consumers expect convenience and accessibility, especially during the holiday season. To meet customers in this new dynamic, restaurants should take advantage of all-in-one restaurant guest experience software, like Incentivio, that can provide modern solutions to increase sales, revenue, and loyalty in this environment. Having a fully branded, native mobile app paired with a consistent, branded web ordering page allows restaurants to take control of their online ordering and track all data.

2. Spice Up Your Loyalty Programs Not With Peppermint But With Holiday Specials

It’s the giving season! Spread the holiday cheer by incentivizing existing loyal customers with seasonal giveaways like free seasonal drink specials, free meals, entrees, or sides. Be sure to choose low-cost, popular items and promote the holiday specials across platforms using in-app marketing, email, push notifications, and social media. Loyalty customers will appreciate the holiday specials, and the specials can attract new customers to enroll as well.

3. The Best Way to Spread Holiday Cheer is Gifting a Meal With the Best Deals

Gifting is huge during the holiday season, and restaurants often get a big piece of that pie. Why? For the 15th consecutive year, gift cards are the most popular present type. Restaurant gift cards are an easy, profitable way to acquire new customers and incentivize guests to dine with the restaurant again. This is the perfect gift option on any holiday list!
To make it even better, there are many restaurant holiday gift card promotions brands can offer. Different gift card incentives that fit a brand’s budget and accurately target their customers can boost revenue/sales and attract new consumers. For example, if a guest buys a $75 gift card, they get a $10 discount to keep for themselves… Since, on average, only 80% of gift cards are ever redeemed, these are great deals for the guest with little-to-no profit loss for the restaurant.
With Incentivio, gift cards are fully integrated with the complete all-in-one digital guest experience platform. Guests can use gift cards across mobile, web, and in-store and create digital wallets.

4. Special Menu? Special Deals? Only For a Limited Time? Try Virtual Locations.

We all see ads for specific menu items and limited-time offers during the holiday season. These clever options always generate revenue and loyal customers because of the specific items available to them. But what if restaurants want to customize a seasonal menu, choose when the seasonal items are available, adjust store hours for the items, customize prep time, input minimum order values, and more?
Well, they can use the online virtual locations feature offered in Incentivio. Within a restaurant’s brand app or web ordering, the feature allows them to create a seasonal menu with holiday specials only available during certain days of the holiday season. Say a restaurant wants to make a limited holiday menu only available for seven days. They can create a virtual restaurant location that appears in their mobile app and web ordering that only shows the holiday menu, holiday specials, and the specific days customers can order items. With the click of a button, the location can be turned off once the holiday deal is over.