With COVID restrictions in the rearview mirror (we all hope), people are looking to finally get out of their houses and do something fun. That means it’s the perfect time to spread the word about your cocktail bar and get more customers through the door. If you’re ready to make 2022 your year, here are seven proven cocktail bar promotion strategies to try.
1. Host theme nights
Nobody can resist a good event. So if you want more people to come through your front door, theme nights are a great way to make it happen.
Here are just a few theme night ideas that’ll entice customers to visit your cocktail bar:
- Trivia contests
- Special discounts (ladies’ night, etc.)
- Casino night
- Game tournaments
- Painting events
Theme nights are also a great way to help balance demand throughout the week. If there are certain weekdays that tend to be slower than others, plan a theme night for that day and get more customers through the door.
2. Work with local businesses
Just like you, other businesses in the area have worked hard to grow their following. Why not use that to your advantage?
Working with other local businesses is like getting free access to an entire audience base. The most popular cocktail bar partnership is with area restaurants and food trucks. Drinking is fun, but eating while drinking is even better! Bring in food from other restaurants, and their regular customers will flock to your bar.
You could even organize a theme night where a local restaurant does a food pairing with some of your drinks to combine two of these great tips into one customer-generating extravaganza!
3. Make it family-friendly with games
Bars typically cater to the adult crowd, but why does that have to be the case? There are plenty of families out there that would love to enjoy your cocktail bar, if only they had something for their underage kids to do.
Providing games is a great way to make your cocktail bar more family friendly. Parents could come and enjoy a drink while the kids play a board game at the table. Everyone has a good time, and you get more business.
4. Add a unique touch
People like places that are unique. There are likely plenty of bars in your area, so think of something that makes yours stand out and lean into it.
Adding a unique touch doesn’t have to be extravagant. It can be something as simple as serving your signature cocktail in a boot-shaped glass (with perhaps a silly pun-filled name to match) or hanging some wild brightly colored wall hangings.
These little unique things will make your bar stand out from the competition and add a memorable atmosphere to your space. When customers remember your bar, they’re more likely to come back—and tell their friends and family!
5. Glow-up your menu
As you might imagine, cocktail bars are all about the cocktails. Your drink concoctions are spectacular, but they have to look and sound spectacular to your customers if they’re going to order them. Creating an eye-catching menu is essential for cocktail bars in 2022.
Not only do you want the menu itself to pop, but you also want to add colorful pictures and mouth-watering descriptions to entice customers to order your specialty drinks. The better looking the menu, the more buzz it’ll create!
You’re a bar owner, not a graphic designer. If you’re looking for some help creating the perfect drink list, there are plenty of menu templates available online. Just choose the one that best fits your bar, add all your mixology specialties, and you’re ready to print.
In 2022, most people search online before going anywhere. Make sure you post your new professional menu to your website so potential customers can think about what they want to order before they even leave the house—or maybe even entice them to leave the house!
6. Set up a profile with online referral sites
The internet is a big place, but marketing to out-of-towners isn’t going to benefit your bar. Your cocktail bar might be the best place in town, but people probably aren’t going to drive across the country to visit. That’s why it’s important to work on building your local online marketing strategies.
The best way to get local traffic online is to use online referral sites. These sites’ entire purpose is to tell people what the best places in town are, so naturally, your bar should show up!
Set up a business profile with at least the following referral websites:
- Google My Business
Once you have your profile, be sure to check it regularly. You can answer questions, respond to comments, and keep tabs on your online rating. The more you can engage with your customers, the higher your ratings will grow, and the more customer referrals you’ll get through the door.
7. Everyone loves live music
There’s no better way to get more customers to visit your cocktail bar than to hire a live band. Not only is live music entertaining for your patrons, but bands also don’t usually like to play for empty rooms. They’ll spread the word about their show, giving you even more advertising bang for your buck!
Just make sure that whatever band you choose fits the style of your bar. If you own a 20’s-themed cocktail bar, it’s probably not the best idea to hire a grunge band. See if you can find a jazz band to fit your aesthetic.
Before hiring a band, make sure you have the proper permits and licenses to have live music. The last thing you want is a fine.
Generate more customers for your cocktail bar
People are finally coming out of their houses and looking for places to have fun. 2022 is the perfect time to really ramp up promotions for your cocktail bar. If you want to get more people through the front door, think about hosting theme nights, working with local businesses, providing a few family-friendly games, adding a unique touch, creating a killer menu, using local referral sites, and bringing in some live music.
Make your cocktail bar the place to be, and you’ll have more customers than you know what to do with!