Whether it’s a casual evening at their favorite local spot or a one-of-a-kind dining experience, today’s date night diners love getting the works. Treat guests to a night they won’t forget and sweeten sales with these date night deals.
Diners always want to impress their dates, but today, expectations are even higher and their priorities are evolving. When dining out, guests are looking for comfort, exceptional service, personalization, and convenience. An increased interest in comped menu items, loyalty rewards, and incentives for future visits is also on the menu. Find out how you can woo your date night diners and keep them coming back for more with these tips.
According to research, more than 30% of guests say that personalized dining matters even more than menu variety or getting their orders quickly. And more than 40% of diners report they would be impressed if their date booked a personalized dining experience.
Personalization telegraphs luxury, and it can be achieved without spending a penny. During the reservation process, collect relevant information about your guests. Capture information about dietary restrictions, accommodate seating preferences, and ask if the reservation is celebrating an anniversary, birthday, or another special occasion. Consider flagging that table to receive a complimentary beverage or dessert to end the evening. Train servers to greet guests by name and confirm details of their visit before moving forward in the evening.
Offering prime seating, chef’s table, discounts, or other perks can appeal to date night diners as well. Friday and Saturday nights are the most popular choices but creating a set date night on a slower night, like a Tuesday or Wednesday, can help drive traffic and boost revenue on those evenings.
Dinner for Two
A prix fixe meal is a great solution for date night diners, because people love choices, and it makes it feel exclusive. Roughly a third of guests report they won’t return to a restaurant if it was sold out of items they were looking forward to ordering. By creating a prix fixe menu, you can control the offerings to make sure this doesn’t happen. Highlight seasonal offerings, pick a theme, or create unique dishes to utilize leftover inventory.
Look for little ways to create luxurious add-ons for guests to make the meal feel even more special with upgrades like an optional truffle shaving over risotto, a wine pairing, a customizable cocktail, or a decadent topping over their steak.
Pack Your Passport
One way to create an immersive dining experience is to explore the flavors of cities around the globe, bundling up your offerings as a ‘getaway’ for guests. This is a great way to get guests to visit your restaurant multiple times within a short period, as they make their way across the globe through your traveling menu.
Create a physical passport that guests can have stamped each time they ‘visit’ a new location, and then offer a reward for filling their passports with a certain number of stamps. Make sure the incentive is enticing enough to get diners to return.
It’s the season for comfort food, hot beverages, and consumers bundling up to take in all the festive fall activities. Capture that cozy experience to attract diners looking for an intimate date night by offering fleece blankets on your outdoor patio, small firepits, comfy chairs, or even bring back the popular igloos that popped up during the pandemic.
Recipe for Romance
Make sure to create an intimate environment for date night, because the ambiance is just as important as the food. Partner with florists, chocolate makers, hotels, entertainment venues, or other small businesses to create a packaged deal to entice diners to indulge themselves and their date a little more.
For an upsell opportunity, offer a photo by your firepit, in their igloo, or by an accent wall or backdrop if you have one that could provide a memorable experience for guests. Encourage them to share on social media and tag your restaurant and use a hashtag for a chance to win a gift card or free dessert at your restaurant to increase customer loyalty and repeat business. With 23% of people wanting an incentive to return for another date, such as dinner discounts or exclusive date night menus, this is your opportunity to not only impress them but improve customer loyalty with your offerings.