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Old 06-17-2009, 10:06 PM   #1
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Default RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

Hello all,

My dad owns a small bar that used to be hopping back in the late 90's/early 200X's, but now that we lack a manager and my dad is spending all his time on another small business and NONE at the bar, the bar is failing miserably. My brother and I are both employees; unfortunately, I don't drink or party and have never been to a bar myself (outside of work) so I don't know what other local bars are doing to succeed. Before going on, are there any forums where I would be better off joining? I cannot find anything...

Anyhoo, there is NEVER anything going on at our bar. Bands are rare, promotions are lacking, entertainment scant. My dad purchased a Wii so we could start bowling/boxing tournaments and he has a Cornhole thingamabobber that he'd like to start tournaments on as well. I know, I know, small little steps but at least it's a start. Problem is, the bartenders don't have the ambition to figure anything out for themselves. How do you run a tournament when we have one...two employees tops at all times? Does somebody need to be refereeing at all times?

Are there any sites/books/magazines that could help come up with tavern promotions? I think there should be something going on at all times, even if it is something small (for example, a small promotion for this upcoming Father's Day would be nice, even if it is advertised as suggesting families bring in photos or other momentos for a free dessert, etc).

I'm really looking forward to hearing any promotion/recommendations anybody has. I'd also like to hear what can be done during sports-games to keep people coming back. Being in a Cleveland suburb, a good promotion for the Cleveland Cavaliers or Ohio State football games would probably work great.

Sorry for rambling, but there is much work to do!

Thanks for any help!
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:09 PM   #2
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

What type of entertainment do you have setup besides the game console? What types of speakers/televisions do you currently use?
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:33 PM   #3
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

We have four nice flat-panels around the bar...I'd say 32", and well as a very nice 55" or so flat panel. Additionally, many of the tables have mini-TV's (about 14", not flat panel). We have a pool table which should be used more. Perhaps offer free pool? Maybe even get a tournament going on that (if we can figure out tournaments). Also one arcade game (some kind of off-roading vehicle game) and two of those Mega-touch Touch-Screen games located at polar ends of the bar. I'm not too sure what type of speakers we have. Again, I'm about the most boring person alive and the last person you'd expect at a bar.

What is very frustrating is that we also have a basement that is fully completed with it's very own bar. We offer the room to bands, parties, etc but 95% of the time we have nothing going on down there. We need to find a way to utilize that basement; it's a huge asset that we are not making any usage of.

We also have a nice outside patio and a nice location with an entrance off of two different roads.
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:34 PM   #4
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

You have some pictures of the place?
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

If anyone is interested in seeing the menu of the bar, it can be viewed at www.myspace.com/sipnpost (the only blog is the menu).
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:38 PM   #6
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

Your menu doesn't look like it's for a bar. How is the place designed?
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Old 06-17-2009, 11:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

Music helps, at a low tone though. Don't want it to turn into a hot-topic xD

I would even go with maybe a small touch screen 27" and put a menu on there with music. When a selection is made it goes in a query "To be played".

Put some ads up around town, make this discussion on multiple forums.
(it's an ad within itself)
Just don't become a spammer. Keep the threads up to date and actually use them.
Get some friends to spread the word as well. Then tell them to tell there friends to spread the word.
Make Thursdays or Fridays half price on drinks night.
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:51 AM   #8
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

find a local gig band promoter and tell them that they can put gigs on there, or have open mic nights.

most performers will come along and bring three of their friends.

then you have a night that the bar would have been empty is now a night where you;ve got 30 people in.


in my opinion getting a Wii isn't going to really bring people in.

a pool table would have been a better investment. if people want to play video games they would likely stay at home and go it.

also whilst people are playing on the Wii, they aren't drinking.

if you could get some old arcade slot games, (possibly off ebay or something) then you might find that putting these in at least helps you get a little more money out of the customers that are already there.

that said, if you have gaming machines especially ones that pay out you might need a license for gambling.

also where are you, US, UK, AU etc, we've got members from all over the world here...


different things work in different places, by the way.

don't think that because a bar across the street has music on and they are so full that they are turning people away that just by getting a stage and a PA system that you'll have that success... you need to build up a reputation...


again with the music. you could turn the basement bar into a music venue, get some decent bands down there, and offer free gigs, after a while when your place is known as a music place you could try charging people to get in.


be realistic, and consider your location. for example, are you in a well to do suburb area?
blues bands, jazz bands and big bands aren't going to draw the crowds.

if you're in a big city, (especially in America places like New York or Chicago) people (tourists) will actually want to visit a bar like this.


look at the people around your place in the town and street, look for a gap in the market and try to fill it. try offering something that others want, but isn't yet catered for...


that could be anything from cheap food to expensive food. a blues club, jazz club, disco club, hip hop club etc...


just realistically, I don't think that video games are going to cut it...


(unless you get a lot and turn the basement into a milk bar).
milk bars are bars that don't serve alcohol, so you can pack the walls with video games and make it like a youth club...
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Old 06-18-2009, 02:36 PM   #9
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

US or UK? What city?
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Old 06-18-2009, 02:46 PM   #10
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Default Re: RFI: Bar/Tavern Promotions

Quote:
North Royalton, Ohio
United States
http://www.myspace.com/sipnpost
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