March brings a lot of opportunities to a restaurant. Aside from spring and St. Patrick’s Day, the tournament is one of the biggest draws during the month. With hours of college basketball on the calendar, there are plenty of opportunities for your bar or restaurant to get in on the madness. Not sure exactly how you can attract casual and hardcore hoops fans? We’ve highlighted four tournament promotions your bar or restaurant should try in 2022.
Offer Wing & Drink Deals
Whether they’re traditional or boneless, wings always go together with sports. So it’s no surprise why they’re the perfect app for hours of nonstop basketball. Consider setting discounted prices on wings during game days. If you anticipate groups coming for the games, maybe offer a special package on large wing orders. For instance, groups ordering 50 or more wings gets a free appetizer.
Drink deals also are essential this time of year. Aside from the standard specials on domestic and imported pints, think about lowering the price on a few craft beers and signature cocktails. You even can give free fountain drinks to customers who order more than $30 worth of food and other beverages. Also, these discounts don’t have to be exclusive to in-person diners. Consider creating extra takeout and delivery offering for wings and to-go beverages. For alcoholic beverages, check if your area allows to-go cocktails before implementing.
Become a Team Headquarters
Having a team in the tournament not only makes watching the games even better, but it also can help your bar or restaurant. If there is a local school in this year’s tournament, transform your place into a team headquarters for watch parties. Show support by decorating your space in team colors and hanging up posters and banners. Your servers also can wear the school’s t-shirts or jerseys on game days. Whatever you do, make sure to take pictures and post them to your social media channels (we got more tips on that below).
Hold a Bracket Challenge
Everyone loves a good bracket challenge… until their bracket busts after the first round, of course. Still, it makes viewing the games much more enjoyable when you’re rooting for teams you’ve picked. Hold a bracket challenge where the winning customer gets an approved jersey, signed memorabilia or a gift card to your establishment. There are plenty of sports media websites that allow you track bracket scoring online, so you don’t have to tally each submission after each round.
If you want to do something that doesn’t center on the games, host an interactive tournament that involves your patrons. For example, test out new sauce flavors or appetizers throughout March and let customers vote round by round. The winning option stays on the menu. Keep patrons updated by posting results on social media and hanging a large bracket on the wall.
Create Slam-Dunk Social Media Campaigns
You always should be active on your bar or restaurant’s social media channels, but the tournament is one of the best times to interact. Regularly post pictures on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to post pictures of your favorite tourney foods and share information about specials and discounts. Make sure to use hashtags associated with the tournament as well as your brand or establishment.
Also, think about using paid ads on Facebook to target people nearby. Depending where you’re establishment is located, you can reach up to 10,000 people per day for less than $4. Make sure to use a catchy photo and headline that will grab people’s attention. Check out our tips for using Facebook ads for more help.