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Know-How Exchange

Topic: Strategy

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This question has been answered, and points have been awarded.

Creative Ideas For Grand Opening!

Posted by Anonymous on 25 Points
Thank you for the responses..In regard to the few asking what type of restaurant it is? It is a Small Plates TAPAS restaurant & Lounge. The space is huge and it has three full bars. We want to market it as a restaurant and not a venue/ bar...even though we have a lounge and a casual atmosphere. It is located in midtown. Yes we did do a soft opening and it went very well. so far we have been listed on the local dining mags and some internet mag. However, We are now ready for a bang. as for the budget. It is always better to find free publicity whenever possible. and we have spent $$$ on advertising with local papers and radios. I am looking for creative ideas for promotions so as to create a buzz as well as an interest? We have faxed out menus to local businesses as well. Any and all comments welcome.

  • Posted on Member
    How about sponsoring with a local dance studio for free salsa dance lessons or hosting a salsa dance party or special night during the week. I know of a tapas place near downtown Chicago with Thursday night Salsa dancing that draws a big crowd. People come in for dinner and then around 10pm or so the tables in a section of the restaurant are pushed back for dancing.

    Also, look at hosting parties for the local Junior League and other similar type groups or arts groups. It sounds like you've got the space to support group events- and those are hard to come by many times. Tapas tends to draw a more sophisticated or adventurous diner in my experience, and groups like those should include the type of diner who'd be more inclined to visit your restaurant.
  • Posted on Member
    how about getting some publicity from online dining sites and bloggers. as far as advertising in print media i would totally forget that, all the restauraneurs i have spoken to find it useless. one way that works is putting on a special each day with some information about the restaurant and then distrbuting the flyer within the five mile radius of your restaurant, that is where most of your customers will be unless yours is a destination restaurant. also offer a special rate for the food for corporate meets by not charging for the room.
  • Posted on Accepted
    Have an "invitation only" Tasting event. Since you serve Tapas style this should be easy. I put invitation only quotation marks because you can place an ad in the local entertainment paper that is an invitation itself. Just be sure to say Reservations Required!
    Rotate people through the evening at different times. Treat it like a meet and greet with a bit of a happy hour cocktail party feel. Serve a variety of tapas throughout the evening horsdoerve (sp) style. Be sure to personally invite food critics and other reporters from print, TV, Radio, Web etc. - do not require those people to make reservations but politely ask for an RSVP. Hand out flyers with the invitation on it to local businesses surrounding your establishment.
    Have a guestbook and request name address and email use this later to thank your guests for their participation and continue to send emails and specials on a monthly basis.
  • Posted by Tracey on Accepted
    I really like the ideas posted above. Additionally, you could send invites or advertise specially to event planners. When I was in event planning I was always looking for new restaurants where I could host events or refer clients. You could even host a special "familiarization" tapas hour or something like that. (You can reach local event planners through your city's convention & visitors bureau).
  • Posted on Member
    I forgot to say....Still charge for drinks....free food NO freee drinks
  • Posted by CarolBlaha on Member
    I would fusion market with a wine store and do winemaker dinners. Your wine merchant has contacts to bring in the winemaker with their distributor. I have owned a restaurant, and am doing such a theme for a friends birthday.

    Tango is hot! Offer lessons.

    Spanish art show-- any local artists you can do a art show with? You exhibit their art and its on your walls on a rotating basis. Its for sale, which helps them.

    Tapas Cooking classes? Is there a gourmet restaurant or a Williams Sonoma that you can market with?

    Carol
    Sell Well and Prosper tm

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