Customer retention, culture, and goal-setting are essential to marketing your restaurant. We believe restaurants have a unique opportunity to build relationships with their customers, which is why we asked Mike Thorp, a restaurant marketing consultant, to share what owners need to know.

2. How can a restaurant go from offering a deal for the first visit to a customer paying full price?

Deals & coupons are tricky. Personally, I am not a fan of either. Converting a guest who is there for a BOGO or other deal into a loyal guest is much more difficult. To me it is why sites like Groupon & do not deliver for independently owned restaurants in the long term.

If a restaurant decides to run a promotion to get guests in the door I would strongly refer to the first question and use the promo to tell the story, deliver a quality product, and build relationships. That emotional connection is what will bring guests back.

Quality food and beverage along with genuine hospitality. Those are the variables. Anyone can offer a BOGO or Groupon but creating a guest who is loyal to the brand instead of the deal will plain and simply not happen just put throwing out an offer. Sales will become reliant on the deal cycle instead of actual constant guests.

Thank you to Blue Light Media for featuring me. Please go check out Blue Light Media

I expand on these thoughts on my Restaurant Report Podcast here as well 

Turn a Part Time Guest into a Full Time Guest - Restaurant Report Podcast

mike thorp