Thanksgiving Marketing Ideas for Restaurants

/ Foodservice Tips, Holiday, Restaurant Tips / November 7

Chef Carving Thanksgiving Turkey - Thanksgiving Marketing Ideas for Restaurants

Thanksgiving is right around the corner; is your restaurant prepared for this big day? If you offer anything on Thanksgiving Day or during the week, it’s a good idea to come up with some marketing ideas for you to promote. These will help get the word out about a special, a limited menu or other fun festivities. But if you’re stuck on what to do, here’s some ideas that’ll help make Thanksgiving fun and profitable for your restaurant.

Create a Special Menu

Creating a special menu for Thanksgiving Day not only streamlines the ordering, prepping and cooking process for you and your staff, but it also gives your customers that full holiday experience. Whether you offer the traditional holiday trimmings like turkey and stuffing or your own unique twist on classic dishes, a limited edition menu is a great way to get customers’ attention. Your Thanksgiving Day menu can be used as marketing material to get the word out—especially if you’re doing anything specifically for that day.

Cater Away

Thanksgiving is a huge day for any restaurant offering a catering selection. Not only does catering make the prep easier for customers, it can also give you an edge on the other restaurants in your area. Be sure to create a special catering menu with customer favorites or specialties, and take orders in advance. This will help inform customers on what you’re serving up and help you prepare for the influx of orders in advance.

Host a Thanksgiving Day Raffle

Raffles are a fun and creative way to get customers to your restaurant and generate buzz about your business. Come up with a few big ticket prizes and some smaller ones to raffle off throughout the day and post them to your social media pages and on your website. You can give out whole turkeys, dessert items, gift certificates for your restaurant, cocktail kits or other fun items that patrons can use for that day’s dinner. From there, you can either do an in-person raffle with tickets or virtual ones that guests can purchase for a flat fee. Then on Thanksgiving Day, let the raffle commence! And if you so choose, you can donate a portion of the raffle ticket proceeds to a local charity of your choosing for an even greater impact.

Post Your Full Menu, Hours and Specials Online

Customers are already planning what they’re going to do for Thanksgiving, so make the search easy for them by posting pertinent information online. Publish your full holiday and/or catering menu on your website and on your socials, along with any deals or discounts you may be offering. This will give your customers a better understanding of what you’re doing so they can make a more informed decision. Not only that, but post your Thanksgiving Day hours for all to see—including on your Google My Business account. Posting your hours will help give customers an idea of when to make a reservation or when to order catering so there’s no confusion or frustration.

Offer Thanksgiving Day Deals & Specials

With prices at all-time highs, you can give back by offering solid deals this Thanksgiving. Make specials for guests ordering full meals from your catering menu (buy more, save more), have kids under the age of 10 eat free, or offer a complimentary bottle of wine or champagne for parties of 5 or more who dine-in or order out. It’s little things like this that’ll make the experience memorable for customers.

Deliver the Perfect Thanksgiving Feast

If you’re able to do so, consider making your Thanksgiving menu deliverable. Whether you use a third-party service like UberEats or DoorDash, or you have in-house delivery, this will be an added convenience your customers will greatly appreciate. Having delivery as an option is also perfect for restaurants that can’t offer much sit-down space to accommodate large Thanksgiving crowds, so it’s definitely a viable option to consider. Just make sure your staff is prepped and ready for the demands of delivering hot, fresh meals.

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