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Attracting the Millennial Diner

Screenshot 2015-05-26 11.03.52Are you looking to sustain and grow a successful bar? Want a steady stream of customers walking into your establishment? Then look no further than the millennials.

For tips on how to market to millennials, download Jon Taffer’s free business app, BarHQ available on Google Play and iTunes

Who are the millennials? Also known as Generation Y and Generation Now, this group dominates as the largest consumer demographic with approximately $200 billion spending power annually. Thus, the savvy restaurateur must do everything in their power to increase awareness within this group.

Who The Millennials Are

Millennials represent approximately ¼ of the entire population and consist of anyone born between 1977 and 1995. They are the most racially and ethnically diverse group in United States history and are the biggest and most influential generation since the baby boomers.

This technologically savvy generation leverages mobile and social media to get advice including information on where to dine. In addition, they tend to view dining out as a chance to connect and prefer to eat at restaurants (and bars) that are newer, classier, and more hip.

Tapping Into The Millennial Market
While gaining the attention of millennials can be difficult, there are also great rewards from tapping into this market. So if you are interested in marketing to this group, it is important to keep the following things in mind:

Encourage word-of-mouth recommendations
Millennials value the opinions of their friends when making decisions. Therefore, it is a must for restaurateurs to encourage word-of-mouth recommendations. Consider spending less money on marketing and instead use those dollars to capitalize on your existing customer base. If you are able to catch the interest of this group, you will also reach their friends.

Use social media
Millennials are technologically savvy, so you must maximize your social networking efforts and develop a constant online presence. Run your promotions on popular social media platforms (like Facebook and Twitter) and utilize calls to action to get them to interact with your brand.

Provide special offers
Another great option is to offer free wireless Internet and location ‘check-in’ specials (Facebook, Yelp, Foursquare) in your restaurants to accommodate their drive for connection and to encourage even more interaction with your brand.

Your level of engagement with millennials can determine whether your restaurant fails or flourishes. Connect with them in ways that matter to them and see the difference that it makes in your profit margin.

McDonald’s Supersized Problems

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McDonald’s, once the world’s largest burger chain, is now headed into a downfall as their 2015 quarterly report displayed diminishing profits, sales, and traffic.

From a marketing perspective, McDonald’s has no story or narrative. Unlike other vibrant brands that feature health-related messages (fresh, organic, light, etc.) or quality messages (meat blends, local, not frozen), McDonald’s has no narrative to connect with today’s market. Legacy brands like McDonald’s cannot depend on their reputation alone to succeed. New brands with enticing stories and product “motivations” will erode stale legacy brands in today’s marketplace.

Read more on the downfall of McDonald’s on Business Insider.

Video: The Evolution Of Holiday Marketing & More

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Jon Taffer discussing Panera’s decision to come “clean,” and the evolution of holiday marketing on Fox Business with Varney & Co.

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Jon Taffer Talks Bar Tech, Marketing to Millennials & Alcohol in Fast Casuals

On this episode of On Foodable Weekly, Paul Barron is at the Nightclub & Bar Show in Las Vegas with “Bar Rescue” host and consultant Jon Taffer. Watch the full episode as Taffer dives into how different technologies are impacting the bar scene; why he’s not a fan of tablet ordering; what one of the most important things every brand needs to attract Millennials; and why alcohol in fast casual has not been as prevalent as it should be, but how that is changing.

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