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Who do you tell about your great new recipe, the special event you are holding in store or even when you are going to be closed? Distribution of any message is key if you want it to be heard. I only mention this as any of the 5 cafe menu ideas listed below will only be useful if you have a solid plan of how you will get the word out

 

5 Cafe Menu Ideas To Super Charge Your Food Service Business

Using social media, traditional flyers, offline advertising and e-mail marketing (Still a great way to communicate) this will all attract new customers to your business and develop the casual customer hopefully into a loyal one. Check out this article on the 5 Customer types you need to consider.

Special Events at a Café

A local cafe near me has focused on offering alternatives to special events. I know this sounds weird hear me out. The football widows event offers the none sports fan an opportunity to not only avoid a major sports event but to have a destination to go to to enjoy the night with like minded people. This is a great way to tap into the zeitgeist without having to invest in televsison licenses or permits. Events like the Oscars and Eurovision attract passionate fans so engage with your customers and try to develop what event could be a winner. Remeber it this is about your customers, not your love of Euro dance music.

Café Live Music

Consistency here is key. Be it once per week or once per month, having a local musician come play will proove a draw. Volume needs to be a consideration, instrumental music or music accompanied by soft vocals is best and least intrusive. You don't want music so loud that diners cannot hear each other or worse puts off loyal customers from returning. Again the point of supporting local talent and promoting it will show your connection to the community and develop the perception of your business 

Early Bird Specials at a Café

Why not try an Early Bird menu design ideas in the slow season and limit the offer from Sunday through Thursday evenings (Your slow days). Early Bird specials for me work best when offered as a two course or three course option. A small appetizer (choice of soup or salad), a selection of 3 mains, and the choice of two desserts. This gives the customer choice over the size of their meal, reducing your work in the kitchen and limiting the wastage from your catering food suppliers. Always look to upsell with sides and drinks.Offer this menu from 4 pm to 6 pm along with the regular menu. . Early Bird menus should be used to increase business on evenings that are normally not busy. 

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Café Tapas Night

Consistency again will lead to more regular bookings so once per week or once per month works well when promoting a Tapas Night. Tapas are snack size meals (not necessarily Spanish flavours), and customers may order a few or a lot of them to share to make a complete meal. The excitement of something new and different will bring people out and into your café. There is even the opportunity here to feature a different chef/ cook everytime. This might sound a challenge but is a great way to tap into someone elses customer base and let your business reap the benefits. Plan out your Tapas menu in advance for a successful promotional event and speak with your sauces company for new ideas. 

If you are starting a food business check out this blog post

Wine Tastings at a Café

Wine tastings are great craic and are a good way to introduce your regular customers to some alternative  wines  and vineyards you may have on your drinks list. The goal is that they start purchasing these higher end bottles when they dine out if they have had the opportunity to taste them. Increasingly wine merchants or the vineyards themselves have business development teams who are geared up to host these nights for you. Just remember with wine tasting it can get a bit out of hand (first have experience)

There are loads of alternative menu ideas and special events you can promote to increase your customer base and hopefully to develop a more loyal regular customers base.

I would love to hear of any other ideas you have employed that have been a great success and also the ideas that have been less stellar. Please comment below

Free Samples

If we can demonstrate how our products can benefit your business during special events or your day to day to achieve More Flavour, More Customers, More Profit, we are sure you will become a customer of ours. That at least is the plan but I still need to prove it to you.

So please take a look at our website for some recipe ideas, or new catering food supplies you might like to sample