Restaurant Promotion Tactics In The Year Of The Rooster

Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival is just around the corner. Soon, many consumers and businesses alike will find themselves gearing up for festivities which are full of life, sound and colour!

As with each Chinese New Year, promotion tactics often commemorate the animal corresponding to the zodiac for that year. According to Euromonitor, 2016 saw brands “going ape for monkeys”.

Following the Chinese Zodiac calendar, 28th January marks the beginning of the Rooster Year. And much like the timely, committed and reliable traits of its associated zodiac sign, the Year of the Rooster reminds us all to get up early and get to work! So, what does this mean for restaurants looking to get festive with their promotion tactics?

In the spirit of the Rooster Year, we took a spin on self-promotion tactics. We are no astrologists, but here’s our take on what restaurants can do to attract customers, and survive the festive boom!

1. Persevere and persist

Hard work and dedication are virtues that pay off during the Rooster Year. And while this may sound like you have a long road ahead, it also means you can use this philosophy to attract customers.

What this means for you:

  • Deliver auspicious dishes such as the rice-based “nian gao” which symbolises success and prosperity – qualities which would appeal to customers.
  • Promote a brand image associated with providing comfort for your customers

2. Stay on guard

Unfortunately, Rooster Years have always been known to be tough to get through. As with many successes, they don’t come easy. Carefully consider your promotion strategies while you make business decisions. Also, keep an eye on the competition.

What this means for you:

  • Spend time budgeting in order to determine whether you have the resources to pull off major events, offer festival discounts, or to welcome new traffic.
  • As festivals translate to rising stress levels for restaurant owners and business managers, remember to prepare early and prepare well to avoid any disaster.

3. Maintain order and stability

Stability is crucial for achieving success in this Lunar New Year. Hence, dedicating your efforts to ‘building’ rather than ‘creating’ may prove to be beneficial for you. Like the Rooster, you must learn to be trusting and trustworthy. The sun will rise upon a new day…

What this means for you:

  • Instead of opening up new chains for your restaurants just for this period, consider innovative tactics to expand your outlet to cater for higher demand. Perhaps you will need to relook your shop floor layout. Also, have you ever considered online ordering?
  • All hands on deck! It gets crazy in the back and you will definitely be looking at hiring new employees. Don’t forget to provide incentives and proper training to current employees, so they are better equipped to manage your operations.

4. Nurture existing relationships

The loyalty of the Rooster also translates into your business relationships. This is the time to strengthen ties with your existing customers or business partners, and to create opportunities to display your commitment.

What this means for you:

  • For restaurants, this could be achieved by personally inviting regular customers for special events or by offering them loyalty discounts and privileges.
  • As managers or owners, remember that your employees are your most loyal family members. Don’t forget to celebrate their hard work and commitment too. It will go a long way in motivating them to cater to the crowds.

5. Paint the town red, literally!

Just as every year is ruled by a certain element from Chinese cosmology, the Year of the Rooster is governed by the Fire element. And just as the Fire element symbolises ferocity and tenacity, using colours which correspond with these energies would not only be auspicious for your business, but would also attract customers!

What this means for you

  • To get into the spirit, adopt a ‘Fire Rooster’ colour scheme for your decor. Hang strings of red lanterns in your restaurant, put up a fiery festive banner, or even add red-coloured garnishing to your dishes for a special touch!
  • The use of such vibrant colours are especially attractive to children. Hold a ‘Fire Rooster’ colouring competition to keep the kids occupied, while you cater to the crowds.
  • Design and name seasonal dishes in line with your theme e.g. “Fiery Fried Fish” or “Red Peppers & Prawns”.
  • Finally, organise a ‘New Year Fire Rooster Event’ where you can bring out all these elements together!

Work hard, work well, and we hope you will be rewarded this New Year!

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