One of the most important things you need to run a successful restaurant is a loyal customer base.
There’s lots of ways to build loyal fans of your business, but in this article we’re diving deep into how you can consistently bring more people through your doors using educational experiences.
Let’s dive right in…
Now you might be thinking: What does my restaurant have to do with education? Isn’t it just about selling food?
This is true, but in today’s market you need to diversify your streams of revenue to remain profitable, and educational experiences are definitely a great opportunity that most people forget about.
My friend Kyle runs a bar called Nimble. He’s actually made more than $50k from educational experiences like teaching people how to bartend! He packaged his bartending experience into a course that he sells to people who are interested.
As another example, if you’re selling sushi, you can create a workshop or product for people that are interested in learning a more about how to make sushi. That’s what I mean by an educational experience.
Diversifying your revenue is more important than ever, and when people have lots of free time at home, learning experiences and activities like DIY kits are another great option that is really popular right now.
1: Education Has High Impact
When your customers are able to understand the process, the actual ingredients and hard work that goes into creating your product, they gain a much deeper appreciation for the food that you serve from this perspective.
They understand the different costs involved that actually justify the price that they’re paying. This is why these courses and educational workshops are so effective and high impact at the same time.
Besides enjoying good food or drinks, it’s a memorable experience people can share with others.
The majority of the time when people come in for an educational workshop, they bring their friends or family and have a great time. In turn, they’re able to associate that happiness with your restaurant and will want to come back again and again!
That’s precisely what Kyle did, creating a viral experience. He even went a step even further by providing all his attendees a workshop certificate that shows others that they completed this bartending course.
This little touch adds a sense of accomplishment and makes the experience something people could even use to get a job in the future!
2: Experiences Fill Your Slow Days
If your restaurant is empty on a Monday or Tuesday, you’re still paying for labour, you’re still paying to keep the doors open, so it really hurts when there’s no revenue coming in.
These days would be a great time to schedule these experiences and events!
This is exactly what we did with our ice cream shop. On Mondays and Tuesdays we host workshops for university students and their different student clubs.
When we host these workshops, these people have such an amazing time with their friends, learning about the origin of ice cream and the different recipes.
Over time, we’re able to turn these customers into loyal fans that actually buy from us over and over again because they had such a great experience.
Not only were we able to pay for our slow day of rent, but we were also able convert more reliable customer traffic.
3. Education Let’s Your Staff Shine
Offering a workshop or experience doesn’t have to take lots of time or money! Don’t hire a teacher, let your staff host!
Getting your team to actually run these workshops not only saves money, but it also makes them feel important by highlighting their talents.
For example, our ice cream baristas love what they do and want to show off and engage with our customers and loyal fans.
During the slow days, they don’t have anyone to talk to, they can’t be proud of what they do. Bringing a group of people in that are willing to learn and appreciate the art of swirling ice cream creates a great energy.
Our staff feels important, acknowledged, and valued. This by itself creates a lot of accountability and a sense of belonging for your staff, and thus they will want to stay working with you.
4: Education Forms Great Community
The real magic in offering an educational experience for your customers is the way that it forms a great community.
You need a community that is engaging, a community that fosters loyal fans.
When you create these experiences, you’re creating that space to communicate with your customers. You’ll be able to share with them what you value, your stories, and your recipes.
Through this, they will have a much deeper appreciation for your brand and what you’re trying to create. They buy into your vision and bind to the mission that you’re out to achieve. They will want to support you instead of your competitor down the block.
That’s how loyal fans are built!
All in all, creating educational experiences is a great way to diversify your different streams of revenue.
It’s especially important during this whole pandemic, because now you can actually separate customers, reserve seats, and get people to come into your shop in a controlled manner.
If you’re in the beginning stages of starting your dream restaurant, cafe or food business and want to do your best to avoid costly mistakes or waste a ton of money…my free masterclass will give you an in-depth look at my ACE formula – the same formula that I used to build my 7 store ice cream chain and how my students were able to get more clarity in their food business. Sign up for the masterclass here.