Marketing Ideas & Tips To Drive Business In 2023

While we know you are all in the heart of a busy Holiday season, it also is a prime time to start preparing for the slower months ahead. Starting your marketing pushes while you have guests filling your seats is the best time to prepare for the months ahead. Below are some ideas to get you thinking about your 2023 marketing strategy. 

 

#1: The Gift-One-Get-One Program 

Offering a “gift one-get-one” gift card program. The intent behind this program is to get people coming back to spend money in your slower months! Ex. If they buy a gift card from you during the busy holiday season, you can “gift” them a cash coupon, or another gift card that can be redeemed in the new year, targeting your slower months. 

#2: Social Giveaways

Take advantage of holiday instagram/social media trends that tend to skew towards giveaways and engagement opportunities. This helps facilitate word-of-mouth conversation, and boosts your social ranking (Tip: The more people commenting and liking your posts, the more likely your posts will pop up on people’s feeds). We did some research and found that the most successful giveaway social posts in Alberta follow the following rules 

  1. Post in the medium that is most popular (so reels or short-form videos) 
  2. Let people know it is a giveaway right away – don’t just hide it in the comments, make it something they see in the first 3 seconds 
  3. Make the giveaway easy to enter. Tag a friend, and follow this account to be entered to win. Bonus points if you share it with your stories. (Trying to get people to go to a different app, or negate the platform to sign up for something else USUALLY doesn’t yield as good/positive results)

#3: Look At The Trends 

If you can start incorporating some trending ideas into your early 2023 strategy, you are more likely to hold onto a strong base of clientele that can take you through till Valentine’s day. Here are some trending ideas to consider: 

  • Experiences/local culture and community initiatives. Think pop-ups, chef collaborations, limited time experiences to get people excited, and trying new things in January and February. 
  • Fried chicken sandwiches & chicken sandwiches 3.0. Here we are seeing twists and new takes on a classic. Spicy and sweet-heat fusion flavours, unique presentations or combinations. 
  • Charcuterie boards (think vegan offerings, think dips, think “not your basic charcuterie board”
  • Comfort fare with healthy roots 
  • Flatbread sandwiches/healthier wraps
  • Menu streamlining. With sky-high food prices, we are seeing more menus that are using ingredients in multiple creative ways to optimize the ROI and sustainability of your menu.
  • Globally inspired salads

Remember, we are heading into Q1 when everyone is getting there bills from the Holidays, they might be trying to cut back expenses or certain foods/beverages, so having options or a unique offering that could bring them back out might be worth your while.

#4: Lean On Your Regulars 

These are your best customers for a reason, and you shouldn’t be nervous to ask for their support!

Invite your regulars in to try your restaurant in new ways. If you see them for dinner, give them a coupon to try out your brunch, happy hour or late night. Utilize your mailing lists from your reservation system to remind people that you are there, local, and ready to serve them. 

#5: Follow Up With Your Holiday Bookings 

It is important to send follow-up emails to those that booked a holiday party this year! You can include an incentivization for early 2023 bookings (ex. offer to book next year’s party or prompt them to get a summer soirée in the books) at a feature price, etc. Another tip is to offer their staff a coupon to come try out something at the restaurant as a thank you for coming in. The idea being you do something simple that their host/organizer can easily forward by email around the whole office.