If you’re running a restaurant and your booking diary looks rather sparse on 14th February, you’ll be all too familiar with how tricky it is to lure people out on Valentine’s Day.

You need to come up with ever more creative ways to get people up off the sofa, away from the box-set and into your establishment.

Thankfully, as a restaurateur, you live in an age where email marketing can help you immeasurably, and we’ve decided to put together 5 romantic promotional ideas your diners will love.

1. Go for a theme

There’s too many boring Valentine’s themed nights that have been rolled out at restaurants time and again. Yours can be different, though, and by going for a slightly different theme, you’ll stand out from the crowd.

Use email marketing to blast out an invitation to spend Valentine’s Day at your restaurant and theme it around a movie (When Harry Met Sally, perhaps?), or go for some live music.

Whatever you do, avoid ‘love is in the air’ as the theme. It’s dull.

2. Stage a chef masterclass

Cooking can be a very romantic thing for couples to do, so why not invite them in on Valentine’s to spend some time with your chef and learn some new culinary skills?

See if your chef is up for it and, if so, put together an experience that includes a romantic meal flanked by a hands-on insight into how the menu is prepared and cooked.

3. Reach out to families

Not everyone can get a babysitter on Valentine’s Day, but why should parents miss out?

Show that you understand the challenges of having little ones on such days by catering for families and putting on a menu that includes dishes for the kids. You might just turn into something of a local hero!

4. Put on a singles night

Ok, so this one might sound a bit weird, but for single people, Valentine’s Day can be rather annoying. Just like parents, however (see tip 3), they shouldn’t miss out, and as a restaurateur you can reach out to the single crowd by putting on a Valentine’s night just for them.

A tongue-in-cheek singles night on the most romantic day of the year might just go down a storm, and you’ll be surprised by how many people it tempts out.

5. Use up those gift cards

Restaurant gift cards can be hard to distribute effectively, but come 14th February, you have the ideal opportunity to shift as many as possible.

For many people, a restaurant gift card as a last minute Valentine’s present will be ideal, so promote the availability of your gift cards on social media and email marketing – you should get plenty out the door and raise cover numbers on the 14th as a result.

Wrapping up

There’s no need for your restaurant to be quiet on Valentine’s Day. Combine our tips above with the power of email marketing, and you’ll never fear this time of the year again!

About 

Mark is one of mailingmanager's email experts. His contributions to this blog openly share the tricks, tips and best practices he's learned while running multiple e-marketing campaigns.

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