30 Bar Specials to bring in customers

how to make your bar

In an area where a customer has many bars to choose from, it is crucial to stand out amongst the rest by using effective marketing and promotional strategies. Customers tend to go for the bar that has a wow factor, whether it’s a drink special, a creative event, or a unique atmosphere. When addressing how you can attract more customers to your bar, and have fewer slow nights, take into consideration how you can make the environment more unique and memorable. 

Factors you should acknowledge when trying to make your bar stand out include the technology you’re using, amenities such as games, events, and the add-ons to bring your business’ personality to life. By incorporating these unique promotional ideas into your setting, you’re allowing your business to stand out, increase bar sales and create loyal customers who want to come back in the future (as your offerings might be different than those of competitors). 

30 ways to bring in customers

When making notable changes to your bar to distinguish your business from others, it is important to incorporate technology. Using tablets or a self-serve beverage system is a great way to show your brand is up-to-date with modern technology. As bars and restaurants strive to become more modern, you will want to adapt your technology to keep up with consumer preferences.

1. Gaming Tablets at the Table For The Kids to Play

Having tablets available for children is a sure-fire way to make your establishment suitable for various age groups. Tablets will provide entertainment for customer’s children and make your business both fun and friendly for all ages. You can have tablets on the tables where kids can play games as they wait for their meals, and this will allow your restaurant to stand out, not just to adults, but their kids as well. And for family fun, you can have trivia as well to enhance everyone’s dining experience. 

PourMyBeer Tip: Make sure you are wiping tablets down with restaurant-grade disinfectants between guests to top the spread of germs. 

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2. Self-pour Beer & Beverage Walls for Adults

Self-pour technology has become a revolutionary and unique way for serving drinks. At a restaurant, the customer does not have to wait to flag down the server if they want a beverage, and they can make a quick and easy trip to the beer wall in a matter of minutes. In a family-friendly environment, such as Dave and Busters and Buffalo Wild Wings, self-pour provides adults with some fun of their own!

Self-pour beverage walls also provide a safe solution during this “new normal.” Self-serve technology allows guests to maintain social distance while pouring simultaneously! And operators keep their guests healthy and happy. Win-win! 

*For more on how self-pour is a safe solution during the pandemic world, check out our 6 reasons here

3. Photo booths for Everyone to enjoy!

There is no better way to capture memories than by taking photos, which is why a photo booth will be a perfect addition for everyone to enjoy. Photo booths are a great way to not only enhance your customer’s experience but also bring in additional profit. With fun filters and backgrounds people can use on their photos, this simple addition to your restaurant will make a lasting impression on diners and leave them with a souvenir reminding them of their new favorite spot. Families, couples, and friends will all love it.

PourMyBeer Tip: Place signage outside of the photo booth reminding customers to keep their masks on, and that only 2 people are allowed inside at once. Also, make sure to place wipes outside of the photo booth as well so customers can wipe it down before entering and exiting.

Bar & Taproom

Bar games always make any occasion more fun and exciting, especially when they bring a little friendly competition to your venue! Your customers may be out with friends, family, or colleagues, and having games such as Jenga, darts, and pool available to keep them busy, will give them a reason to stay longer and set your establishment apart from others. 

It is important to note that during the pandemic, you don’t want to gather too many people in one place. You want to keep your establishment safe for everyone. Consider which games can be played safely at your business and which would be best saved for after the pandemic.   

4. Popular Bar Games

Jenga 

You can either use a standard Jenga game or one specifically for drinking to make things more interesting. You can also get a giant Jenga game for extra fun.

Darts

A classic bar game, in which you can hold mini-tournaments and create some fun competition amongst patrons. 

PourMyBeer Tip: To make safety a priority, ensure you are using magnetic darts at your establishment. 

Pool

By adding a pool table to your restaurant, brewery, or taproom, you can immediately enhance the environment and give your establishment a distinctive tone and personality. 

Self-Pour Games 

At your self-pour venue, encourage games, such as flavor identification, to promote your beer wall and offer a unique selling point to your establishment. Ask customers to identify the beer and the flavor.

Jenga 

You can either use a standard Jenga game or one specifically for drinking to make things more interesting. You can also get a giant Jenga game for extra fun.

Darts

A classic bar game, in which you can hold mini-tournaments and create some fun competition amongst patrons. 

PourMyBeer Tip: To make safety a priority, ensure you are using magnetic darts at your establishment. 

Pool

By adding a pool table to your restaurant, brewery, or taproom, you can immediately enhance the environment and give your establishment a distinctive tone and personality. 

Self-Pour Games 

At your self-pour venue, encourage games, such as flavor identification, to promote your beer wall and offer a unique selling point to your establishment. Ask customers to identify the beer and the flavor.

Events are the perfect opportunity to pack your bar, bring in customers, and retain loyal customers. Think about who you are trying to target with each event. Many bars and restaurants have happy hour events or weekly event nights that bring in a crowd. Events make for a great evening with lots of fun for your customers and profit for you. 

Although events look a bit different this year, there are still many ways to bring the community together safely! You can host your events virtually. This way, your guests can still join in on the fun while remaining safe in the comfort of their own homes.

5. Live Music

Having live music at your venue will help bring customers through your doors. Many people love having entertainment while they dine to make for a more relaxing and enjoyable experience. Once a week, you can hire a band or singer to perform a specific genre of music that people will love to listen to, especially in the evening. Make sure that the music goes along with the style of your restaurant or bar so you can better attract your target audience. Another way to bring in a crowd is through a scheduled karaoke night. Not only is karaoke fun for the performers, but also those just watching. 

6. Open Mic Night

Open mic nights allow customers to perform their favorite forms of entertainment, such as comedy and poetry. Open mic is a way in which patrons can openly share their art in an inclusive and welcoming environment and make them want to come back time after time. Also, everyone loves dinner and a show!

6. Open Mic Night

Open mic nights allow for customers to perform their forms of entertainment, such as comedy and poetry. Open mic is a way in which patrons can openly share their art in an inclusive and welcoming environment, and make them want to come back time after time. Also, everyone loves dinner and a show!

7. Trivia Night

Trivia is always a good time, and making a night out of it allows for some friendly competition in your establishment. Friends and family will get into groups to try and answer as much trivia as they can, all while sharing laughs and making some good memories.

PourMyBeer Tip: Try hosting your weekly trivia on Zoom! Post about it on your social media channels to get the buzz out. Many businesses have seen success through virtual events as customers are looking to support their local businesses in any way they can!

8. Holiday Events

There’s no better way to celebrate the holidays than with friends and family gathered together under one roof, chatting over some good drinks. You can host holiday events throughout the year to bring together customers, whether it’s for Christmas, New Years, or Easter brunch. 

9. Charity Fundraisers

By hosting charity events at your establishment, it will help you present your brand to others and show you are a business that cares! It is a great way to get your name out while also doing some good for your community, which is the most rewarding part.

*If you host an event in person this year, make sure it is in compliance with all CDC and WHO recommended guidelines. Many states have specific guidelines in place, limiting the number of guests allowed to gather. Hosting events virtually will be the safest and most practical way to entertain this year! Get creative and think outside of the box to entice guests to join in on the fun.*

Touches

To bring in AND retain customers at your restaurant or bar, you should think about how you can go the extra mile to make your business stand out from the crowd. You will want to do all you can to make your customers fall in love with your establishment. What you need are unexpected touches to make your guests feel welcome and make your restaurant or bar memorable.

10. Fresh flowers

Using fresh flowers will give your environment a lively and brightened aesthetic that will tie the room together, as well as add a touch of personality. Use flowers that go along with your color scheme and style, as you wouldn’t want to put red roses in a sports bar. 

11. Hooks to hold purses

Figuring out where to put one’s purse at a restaurant can sometimes be a struggle. It doesn’t go on the table, it’s uncomfortable and annoying to keep on your lap or behind your back, and it may not necessarily be safe under your chair. For these reasons, hooks on the tables and bar for purses will be useful for many women, especially since no one wants to put their expensive handbag on the floor.

12. Interesting & Clever Bar Menu

As a business owner, you must distinguish your brand, and in doing so, you should opt for interesting looking dishes and pottery, such as unique plates, bowls, and glasses. This way, your plates of food will stand out, and the meal will look pretty, so people are more likely to take pictures and post them on social media. Free advertising right there! You can find what you are looking for at many home furnishing and wholesale restaurant stores.

13. Designated driver program

With a designated driver program, you can show your community that you care for their wellbeing and appreciate their business. Many bars offer free Uber or Lyft when patrons have no way of making it home, as they want to make sure they are not picking up the keys when they have had too much to drink. Along with this program, some bars also offer free Uber or Lyft rides to help women who may be in an uncomfortable situation, like a date gone wrong.

14. After dinner treat

A piece of Belgian chocolate or ideally something small made in house can go a long way to make you stand out with your reviews. Having a good dessert variety is another great revenue stream, as customers won’t feel the need to go elsewhere for an after-dinner treat. 

PourMyBeer Tip: If applicable for your business – use a different color mug for regular versus decaf coffee to make it easier for your staff when running refills.

15. Coasters

Coasters are a great way to market your business and present your brand to customers. You can include the name and all your business’ information, even the story of how your business came to be. A unique coaster can stand out, and some people even like to collect them!

16. SUnglasses

If you have an outside patio, you may want to offer inexpensive sunglasses – branded, of course! If your guests end up leaving with the glasses on, they got a little present, and you got your branding advertised all over town.

17. Souvenirs

If your business offers merchandise such as t-shirts, glass pints, keychains, stickers, etc., it will be a lot more memorable for those paying a visit. People love collecting t-shirts from their favorite spots to remember their trips and to show support to their favorite businesses. With souvenirs and branded merchandise, your business will stay on the top of their minds.

18. Complimentary Dessert

It can go a long way if you know that your guest is celebrating a special event. Surprise them with a free dessert. It can make them feel special, as they should!

19. Candles

Candles on the table will give your establishment a cozy and comforting vibe, whether you choose to go with electric or wax tea lights. They will enhance the atmosphere of your space, especially if you are focusing on making it romantic or intimate. 

20. Bottled Water

Another way to show your customers that you care is by offering complimentary bottled water – though this is more practical if your business is a bar where customers will be drinking. It will be a good way to make sure that your customers aren’t overdoing it and can stay hydrated, especially in those hot summer months. 

21. Buckets of ice for sodas and beers

If you are serving a group of people and they are opting for bottled beers rather than draft, you can make their visit more pleasant by providing a bucket with ice for them so they can keep their drinks cold throughout their dining experience. 

22. Staff names and their story on the menus

If you have employees that have worked with you for years, highlight them, and make them feel special. Many customers like to know who is serving them, and it can make for a pleasant interaction between them and their server. 

23. Display upcoming specials and promotions

By having cards or a special board promoting upcoming events and food or drink specials at your establishment, you can influence their decision to come back soon. They can see what you have in store for your business and decide which days they may want to come to visit. Whether there’s a special for Taco Tuesday, or Wine Wednesday, customers can plan their week accordingly. 

24. Mug club

If you sell beer on draft, whether it is from self-serve or traditional taps, promoting a “Mug Club” is a great way to make the beer-loving customers come back for more. All they have to do is pay a fee, and then members can get discounts for their favorite beers, get exclusive member-only offers, and more. You have the freedom to add your creativity and make this club what you want it to be. 

25. Calculator with the check

Offering a calculator with the customer’s check makes it simpler for them to split bills, calculate tips, etc. It is just a little token of your appreciation for their business and will make things easier for them. 

26. Special Names for Menu Items

A great way to encourage your customers to visit your establishment more often is by offering personalized menu items named after the regulars. This is a creative way to tie your guests to your restaurant. It can also be beneficial to name either your establishment or specific menu items after a college or high school that is in your community. This will certainly popularize that menu item. Additionally, if you have sports teams or clubs that hang out at your establishment, name a style of pizza or cocktail after them. This will show them how much you appreciate their business.

Positioning as

In order to position your establishment as family-friendly, there are some small tweaks you can apply to your business environment.

27. Children’s Seating Options

You can provide high-top chairs on wheels for children so that they are easy to move. This allows parents to move their children around the table if they need to push them closer to the table or closer to them for any reason. 

28. Area for New Mothers

There can also be a separate area for nursing in a backroom or a family-restroom. This can be a fantastic thing for mothers so that they don’t have to feel uncomfortable or leave the establishment to nurse. 

28. Area for New Mothers

There can also be a separate area for nursing in a backroom or a family-restroom. This can be a fantastic thing for mothers so that they don’t have to feel uncomfortable or leave the establishment to nurse. 

29. Kids Menu and Silverware

As a family-friendly restaurant, you can also offer kid-sized and styled glassware as well as silverware, to make eating more fun for smaller children. Many restaurants offer kids menus with a smaller portioned meal and an included drink and dessert. The drink will sometimes come in a reusable plastic cup with a fun straw. Kids can bring home this souvenir and will keep your restaurant in mind!

30. Kid-Friendly Souvenirs

Another souvenir idea for children to take home is if you have a gift shop or branded merchandise, offer some fun stuffed animals with your logo or of your mascot. More branding will remind your child of your place and make them want to go back. Lastly, free balloons always make for some kid-friendly fun. Make sure to have your logo put on them, and when the child leaves your establishment, people outside will see your restaurant name. More inexpensive advertising!

To view more ideas for events you can host at your establishment, click below!

If you have any more ideas for how to bring in customers to your establishment, we would love to hear it! You can call us at (312) 416-9989 or send us an email at cheers@pourmybeer.com.

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