Restaurants and birthdays have always gone hand-in-hand. Going out to celebrate your birthday is one of the more common American traditions around. (Personally, I can’t recall the last time I haven’t gone out to eat on mine.) The National Restaurant Association backs this up, telling us that more than 70% of Americans go out to eat for their birthdays. That’s a pretty overwhelming majority.

There are birthdays every single day. This isn’t an event or a holiday you have to wait for. Your restaurant can start capitalizing on the full potential of birthdays as soon as possible? How? Invest in birthday marketing.

Concerned it might not be worth it? Don’t be.

Birthdays are high-spending affairs. Birthday parties are larger, and more willing to shell out for extras, whether that be drinks, appetizers, or desserts. After all, they are celebrating. National Restaurant Association research indicates that your average birthday party spends $78 per table. Not only that, the average amount of people at a birthday table is 3-4 people.

Build your birthday list. The first key component of improving your birthday marketing is to start keeping track of customer birthdays. There are a few ways to do go about doing this.

Some restaurants offer specialized birthday clubs, in which the customer may provide any combination of their birthday and email, phone number, address, etc. Subsequently, when their birthday comes around, they’ll receive an offer or gift that may or may not be time-sensitive to the customer’s birthday. The more enticing the offer, the more likely customers will be to sign up in the first place.

Rather than just having a birthday club, I recommend incorporating birthday club elements into a more fully-fledged loyalty program. That way, you have the opportunity to consistently keep your customers engaged as the year goes by. You can even advertise a select birthday offer as a benefit for signing up.

Run birthday promotions. Once you’ve built your list, you need to start promoting.

  • Send out birthday emails to your loyalty members in advance. Send them a special birthday offer to incentivize coming in to celebrate.
  • Send birthday messages via SMS on their birthday.
  • Consider sending physical cards in the mail. Even better if they’re handwritten.

Make it memorable. When it comes down to it, customers will be more likely to want to celebrate at your restaurant if you’ve done something to make the experience more memorable. Unless your restaurant is a personal favorite of the customer, they’re going to need something just a little extra to put them over the edge. Something that makes them think “Oh, I hear that place is great for birthday!” Here’s a few examples of little things you can do.

  • Do something special (e.g. sing a birthday song)
  • Birthday message on the menu
  • Complimentary dessert (with a candle!)

Digitize Your Marketing With CoGoBuzz

With CoGoBuzz, our state-of-the-art service, we’ll set you up with the digital solution you need to make birthday marketing easy. Thanks to the combined efforts of advanced WiFi, SMS, and Email solutions, our service engages your customers directly on their mobile devices. Promote and engage both in-store or out.

Ready to build your birthday list? Gain automatically developed customer profiles for every customer that logs into your WiFi, setting you up with valuable data for all of your marketing efforts. Take advantage of a fully digital, text-based loyalty program. Send Automated Birthday Messages via SMS and more!

Want to learn more about CoGoBuzz? Check out the rest of our website!

What does your restaurant do for birthdays? Let us know in the comments!