Restaurant businesses are one of the hardest to keep open for very long. They often struggle to earn a profit long-term and usually go under within a couple of years of opening. Some of the issues they face may be external things like the rising cost of ingredients, and others might struggle with pricing or offering the right kinds of menu items. But one thing that can easily set you apart from other local businesses is offering entertainment or other fun activities to your restaurant.
There is a reason that places like Casa Bonita in Colorado and the Rainforest Café’s were able to bring in business year after year. They offered food alongside a unique environment that created a fun experience. Here are some ideas to help you as you build your new restaurant business from the ground up.
Music is excellent in a business. You could invite local artists to come play for open mic nights, or you could invest in a simple jukebox to encourage people to select their favorite songs. Keep a section cleared to offer a small dance floor to get your guests up and moving. It’ll make your business stand out in the crowd and attract just the right kind of people night after night.
Old-School Video Games
Do you remember going to the arcade at your favorite local restaurant? It was a great way to pass time as your parents stayed and chatted for longer than you had energy to sit. Whether it’s a game of ping pong, or an exciting round of Tekken, old-school games are a new-school way to help your restaurant business attract customers and keep them coming back for more.
Do you want to serenade your guests with opera or croon them with some of the latest top hits? Then hire waitstaff who can double as singers. Singing waiters and waitresses can offer a fun environment for your family-owned business. Make sure you have a theme for your music. It might be something like top 20 hits or Broadway classics. Perhaps your singers only sing jazz hits from the 40’s. You’d be amazed how something like this can encourage guests to come back week after week for an entertaining meal.
Murder mystery dinners are not the only kind of theatrics you can have in a restaurant. Why not put on mini plays at the top of every hour, or offer monthly special shows for your guests? It creates a unique atmosphere when you combine the arts with your business.
Invite funny men and women to take over the mic for the night. You can find family-friendly and adults only comedians who will have everyone roaring with laughter. People love to laugh so you can’t go wrong with incorporating the funnies into your restaurant.
Incorporate Local Artists
Art is beautiful. Your restaurant already has a following so why not leverage your popularity to also promote local artists. You can hang art on the wall, host art exhibits, and more. You’ll be able to showcase paintings, photography, and even modern pieces not only into your décor, but also into your restaurant culture. When you’re a place that elevates local artists and gives them room to share their work, you become known as a business that is connected to the community and cares about the success of others.
Free Food (If You Eat All of Something)
Have you ever seen those giant burgers or insane desserts? Some restaurants create an impossible challenge. If you eat the entirety of one of the gigantic food creations all by yourself, your reward is to get that item for free. This can bring in some exuberant foodies who think they are up for the challenge. Take it one step further and create a wall with photos of the winners and offer a fun ribbon, medal, or trophy to anyone who succeeds at the impossible eating challenge.
Running a restaurant is hard. But offering fun entertainment makes the work more exciting for you and for your customers. While the food needs to be good, if the environment is also exciting, people are more likely to come back again and again and invite their friends.