Halloween Marketing Ideas for Restaurants
Can you believe 2021 is almost over? Autumn is upon us and many restaurants and bars are incorporating the fall season into their marketing initiatives. With Halloween quickly approaching, restaurants are uniquely positioned to capitalize on this popular holiday.
With Halloween-related spending hitting $8 Billion, this holiday provides great promotional opportunities for your bar or restaurant to excite current customers, attract new diners, and get noticed! Here are three ways to leverage Halloween for your restaurant’s bottom line!
Dress up your Location with Halloween Decor
Make sure people know you’re celebrating Halloween. Decorate your main entrance with pumpkins, spider webs, or other adornments. Signs that say “Enter at your own risk” or other spooky phrases are also great.
Uniquely carved pumpkins tend to garner a lot of attention. If you can brand some with your logo, even better! Place accent items around the inside of your restaurant to make the vibe feel authentic.
Dressing up your bar or restaurant doesn’t have to stop with the venue itself. Encourage your staff to wear costumes, makeup, or all-black to emphasize the ambiance. If you want to go big, hire a makeup artist to turn your team into a unified crew of scary characters.
Incorporate Halloween into your Menu
Brainstorm unique cocktail ideas to entice your customers. If you’re not sure where to start, search the hashtag #halloweencocktails on social media for inspiration. Out-of-the-box options will provoke conversations among friends and be highly Instagrammable, too.
For example, who doesn’t love a little blood in their cocktails? Red-colored drinks are perfect. You can also give Halloween-themed names to traditional cocktails that are already on the menu. Another fun option is to treat guests to complimentary “vampire blood” shots in tubes or syringes. Adding a dry-ice cocktail is another simple way to enhance an already-existing menu item.
Your food menu is also a great marketing tool you can use to emphasize Halloween. Change up your menu’s design or names of dishes to add Halloween flair without having to change your offerings. For example, you could rename tomato soup to a “vampire blood bowl.” Use a digital menu tool to seamlessly update your menu before and after the holiday.
Host a Halloween-Focused Event
There are lots of different events you can host around the spooky season. If you’re a family friendly restaurant, invite families to trick-or-treat. You can attract a lot of foot traffic and engage the community by offering candy to those who stop by. The small cost of candy will reap huge ROI if those families come in to dine as a result.
Hosting a costume contest or Halloween party is another great option. If you already host a recurring event like live music, karaoke, or bottomless brunch, make the event themed for October. If you have private event space, offer Halloween packages that include themed decor, food, drinks, etc.
If you run a bar, plan a Halloween-themed trivia night. Trivia nights are perfect for everything from date nights to friend gatherings and are sure to draw a crowd. Create Halloween-focused questions and test your patrons’ knowledge of topics like scary movies, folklore, or the history of the holiday.
While there are many other ways to leverage Halloween for marketing your restaurant, these few should get you started. Halloween provides the perfect opportunity for restaurants and bars to capitalize on people’s desire for spooky, themed fun. Get in on the festivities by incorporating some of these ideas that are sure to be a hit!