7 Ways To Attract Loyal Restaurant Guests

September 9, 2014 - 5 minutes read

Building a database of loyal guests takes time but is well worth the effort. Too many restaurants rely on daily deal sites to bring in guests, but chances are they’ll never visit your restaurant again. Instead, create a program that rewards your guests loyalty – treat your guests well and surprise them with exclusive deals and you’re sure to earn their business.

According to FSR Magazine, guests who are part of a loyalty program are 70% more likely to make a repeat visit. That’s a lot of repeat customers!

So how do you attract loyal restaurant guests? Here’s 7 ways:

Collect Contact Information

eateria VIP cardsThe most important aspect of building a successful loyalty program is developing a database with all of your guest information in one place. Having access to hundreds of emails allows you to promote your specials and events quickly and efficiently to people who are already interested in your restaurant.

Need help starting a loyalty program? Build your own customer loyalty program with eateria.

Welcome Gift

Getting restaurant guests to join your loyalty program can be as easy as offering an incentive. Need an example? Offer guests a free milkshake when they order a burger from you. On thing you always want to keep in mind is that guests spend a minimum amount in order to redeem their welcome gift. Giving away something free without requiring any type of purchase will unfortunately attract guests only looking for a freebie – which could hurt your business in the long run.

Send a Birthday Present

birthday_specialOkay, not a real present – well you can if you want but we’re talking emails here. It not only feels awesome to have your friends and family wish you a happy birthday – but guests love when their favorite restaurants remember too. Encourage customers to celebrate their birthday at your restaurant with an incentive – free dessert or a drink will usually do the trick!

Celebrate Anniversaries

The best restaurants give any excuse to have their customers visit their restaurant. Sometimes a delicious incentive is all a restaurant guest needs to decide on where to dine out that week.  Remembering a customer’s anniversary date and then sending them a special promotion exclusively for them not only helps your restaurant stand out in a positive way but also continually drives business throughout the year to your restaurant. A patron who may not have thought to visit your restaurant at all, suddenly has a reason to dine at your establishment within a week!

Bring on the surprises

Offering periodic and spontaneous offers shows the value in being part of your restaurant’s loyalty program and keeps your guests on their toes. To make the most of your email program – keep your offers creative and enticing. Offer a free drink to the first 20 members of your loyalty program who show your email or surprise them with a Breakfast Month and offer a gourmet brunch buffet or 50% certain items.

Offer Exclusive Deals

Keeping with the trend of making your loyalty members feel special – offer exclusive deals, specials and sneak peeks to your members first. If loyalty program members aren’t receiving value from your email program, they most likely won’t see the value of staying on your mailing list. It’s too easy for recipients to hit the dreaded “unsubscribe” link on an email and it will happen. Keep your messages full of value and add exclusive offer from time to time.

Keep Recruiting

Building up your loyalty database is an ongoing process – you’ll no doubt lose members due to life changes – so you need to keep growing your members. If you need help with the best practices for collecting customer information – we’re here to help! Treat your guests information like gold – and they’ll do the same for you!

Loyal Restaurant Customers


Tags: ,