The bar industry has grown widely in recent years. A bar caters to different types of customers, including those who celebrate a colleague’s promotion, those who want to hang out with friends, those craving solace after a hard day, or those who simply want to vibe alone.
In this highly competitive industry, bar owners must have solid marketing plans to attract customers and stand out in the competition. To help you with this, we have brought you some effective strategies for attracting and retaining bar customers, including various bar marketing ideas.
Let’s get started!
First, Understand Your Target Customers
Before designing marketing plans, it is necessary to understand your target customers. We can conduct surveys and research with our customers to know them better. This will help us to learn about our ideal customers and their purchasing behaviour. Without understanding your target customers, it is very difficult to make a marketing plan for a bar.
Don't worry, we have listed down some steps that will help you understand your target customers:
- Study Your Target Customers: Are your customers mainly male or female or of different genders? What age group do they fall under? What is their income level? What kind of hobbies and interests do they have? By knowing all these, we can have a solid profile for our targeted customers.
- Conduct customer Surveys and Research: In order to work on bar ambience and the type of hospitality to offer, we need to know the behaviour of our customers. For example, you could create a survey and ask about customers' favourite drinks, the type of music they like, their reason behind visiting your bar, and so on. Along with that, you could also create promotional offers that are tailored to your customer's specific needs.
- Gather Data to Understand Your Customers: It is important to understand your customers' purchasing habits. You could analyse sales data to see which drinks are the most popular. Similarly, if you own a website, track down which page your customers interact with the most.
By doing all these, you can finally proceed to design marketing campaigns that attract ideal customers to your bar.
Develop a Unique Value Proposition
The Unique Value Proposition (UVP) for a bar refers to what makes your bar stand out in a competitive market. Ask yourself, "Why should customers choose your bar over others in the area?"
Remember that while formulating marketing ideas for bars, developing a UVP is a must. A UVP helps to attract and retain customers in your bar. To help you, we have gathered some bar marketing ideas to consider when developing a UVP:
- First, decide on a UVP for your bar. For example, UVP for a bar can be a signature cocktail, a themed night, or live music with local artists. All these things can give your bar a unique label over others.
- Once you've finalised your UVP, it's important to communicate it to your potential customers. Utilise your online presence, such as your website and social media pages, as marketing material to let your customers know about your UVP.
Your UVP is a strong weapon to attract your potential customers. A UVP for your bar can be something like:
“At XYZ Bar, we offer you a distinctive experience that provokes all your senses. Our signature natural cocktails, made from locally-sourced ingredients by our crafty bartenders, are perfectly portioned to satisfy your taste buds. To give you a memorable experience with your drinks, we have live music by the local artists in the city.”
Creating a Marketing Plan for a Bar
A key factor in attracting bar customers depends on marketing plans. Bar owners must focus on building a solid marketing plan that involves a variety of strategies to attract customers.
Creating a marketing plan for a bar is a bit crafty and creative, and many bar owners stumble on this. To help you with that, we have listed some bar marketing ideas:
- Decide on your objectives, target audience, and strategies: Start out by setting a clear objective. Do you want to promote a new menu item, boost revenue, or increase foot traffic? After deciding on an objective, focus on your target customers, and then design strategies and apply them to your target customer to achieve that objective.
- Social Media Marketing Ideas: The best way to attract new customers to your bar is to use old customers' reviews to showcase your bar’s UVP. Conduct monthly giveaways or offer discount coupons to increase your social media traffic.
- Email Marketing Ideas: Let your customers know about upcoming events such as game watch nights or live music through newsletters. Use eye-catching visuals in your email to gain attention to the fun events that you are planning for your bar.
Along with these, you can conduct a launch party for a new cocktail menu and offer a complimentary drink to guests who bring a friend. This will help you retain customers at your bar.
Working With a Marketing Agency
Making a place in the highly competitive bar industry is a challenge, especially for bar owners who are doing everything on their own. To face these challenges, it is recommended to work with marketing agencies.
When choosing a marketing agency, look for an agency that is familiar with the bar industry. Does the agency you are trying to work with understand your business goals? Do they have a clear understanding of your brand and your target audience? Make sure that the agency offers various services such as social media marketing and handling events. Remember to discuss your budget and needs with the agency before starting the agency.
Getting help from a marketing agency for bars can increase your bar’s visibility in the competitive and crowded industry. This can save time for new bar owners who wish to establish a brand in the industry.
How to Retain Customers?
It is equally important to retain your existing customers. Most bar owners just focus on attracting new bar customers. A loyal customer will refer your bar to their friends, family, or colleagues. This will help to gain new customers.
We have researched well and brought you some of the ways to retain bar customers:
- Prioritise excellent customer service: The best way to retain customers is by providing excellent service. Make sure that your staffs are friendly and attentive to the customers. The staff should be engaging and quickly responsive to the customer's orders. This will help to win customers' hearts and make them want to come to that bar more often.
- Reward Customers: In order to retain customers, owners should reward their customers. For example, offer discount coupons - if your customer buys 10 drinks, give them a free drink. This will encourage the customer to visit your bar more frequently.
- Interact with Customers to Promote Your Bar: Instagram stories are a great way to promote a business. Interact with your customers and encourage them to tag your bar name in their Instagram stories. Also, reply to their messages, and comments and post relevant content. This will help you to get connected with your customers online.
- Host Events: Hosting events like trivia night, rock music night, jazz music and dance night, karaoke night, game watch parties, etc helps to retain the existing customers. Offer events that serve your target audience’s interest.
In conclusion, for the success of any bar business attracting new customers and retaining the existing ones is essential. Understanding your target customers, developing a unique value proposition, creating a marketing plan, working with a marketing agency, and implementing various strategies to retain your customers, help you increase revenue with time. Providing excellent hospitality services is just as important as serving high-quality drinks. We encourage bar owners to follow these things to build a brand in this competitive industry. Remember that with proper marketing ideas for bars, you can thrive in this industry!