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Top 4 Ways to Promote Your Restaurant

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How do you get more customers to come through your door? And, how do you keep them coming back again and again with so many eateries to choose from?

Here’s a list of great promotion ideas to help you grow your business and win loyal customers.

1. Loyalty Cards

As an independent restaurant owner, how can you get customers to return on a regular basis when there are so many branded eateries around from Starbucks to Jamba Juice to Red Lobster? Answer: Reward them. Give them a loyalty card that you print up, and every time they buy a meal, stamp it with your unique stamp. After 6 visits buy them a free drink or dessert. With a full card (10 visits) they can recieve a free entrée when they bring in a guest.

2. The Star Factor

It’s a tried and true method – to keep your eatery “hot” and popular, invite local celebrities in to dine on the house, take a photo of them with you, have them sign it and display the framed photo on the wall. If someone famous walks in, make sure to keep a camera handy by the register.

Befriend the folks at nearby hotels and ask them who’s in town. Deliver some food to their room (cookies, brownies, whatever) and ask them to leave a signed photo to you that you can put up in your place.

3. Teach

Whether it’s teaching how to run a restaurant at a local college or having your chef give a cooking demonstration at the restaurant on a night you’re usually slow or closed, teaching is a cheap way to get your name out there. Offer to speak to your local business group and give out menus and cards and offers for discounted catering.

4. Host a Benefit

Offer to host a popular charity event in your area or supply some of the food for it if they’ll advertise you as a sponsor in their posters and programs.

Food and other costs can be written off as charity. Check with your accountant for the specifics.

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