More than likely, you’ve been asked to provide your email address for promotions through various online companies, and even brick and mortar stores that you frequent. These promotions can work for restaurants as well, but you have to make sure that you do it the right way.
Keep in mind that some people don’t like to sign away their email address to strangers. They are afraid of getting spammed and hacked, and you really can’t blame them. As great as technology is, it also comes with a lot of problems. Never tell someone that they have to sign up, as this can get a lot of people angry. Instead, have your employees point out the email signup book and let the customers know that you will be sending coupons and special offers through the address, and that is the only thing that you will be doing. Let them know that you aren’t going to sell the addresses to anyone else.
You can have a book at the front of the restaurant where people can sign up. You should also have a form or an email address on your website that people can use to sign up if they don’t want to sign up while they are at the restaurant.
Once you have people start signing up at your restaurant, you will be able to build your database. Make sure that you only send out infrequent messages in the emails, and make sure that they always contain something that your customers will find useful. Coupons should always be part of the email. Offer a free dessert coupon during one mailing and a 20 percent off coupon in the next. You can also include any pertinent information about special events, holiday specials, or reduced hours in the mailing.
It is a good idea to keep the mailings to one or two per month. If you send out any more than that, there is a chance that people are going to start viewing the messages as spam. If that happens, they might just avoid your restaurant altogether. You should also give people the opportunity to opt out of the mailing list at any time.
Once you have a large database of names and email addresses and you send out you promotions, you will start to see an influx of customers using those coupons. It takes a little time to get rolling, but this type of promotion does work.