The fall colors are done popping, temperatures are dropping, and people are Christmas/Holiday shopping meaning winter is upon us. With winter comes cabin fever. People are bundling up at home rather than bracing the cold. Unfortunately, this results in winter being a slow period for many bars, restaurants, and taprooms. Here are some ideas for Table Tap customers to implement during the winter season to help drive traffic and boost sales:
Beverages to have on tap during the winter
As weather changes from hot to cold, patrons’ beer preferences change from light and refreshing to warm and cozy which usually translates into heavier and darker beers:
Stouts: A stout is a type of beer that is known for its dark color, rich and full-bodied flavor, and often features roasted malt or roasted barley. Stouts can vary widely in terms of taste, aroma, and mouthfeel, but they are generally characterized by their robust and hearty nature. Stouts can have varying alcohol content, but many fall into the moderate to high range. Some stouts, like imperial stouts, can have alcohol by volume (ABV) percentages well above the average for beer.
Porters: Porter is another dark beer style, similar to stout, and the two styles share some common characteristics. Like stouts, porters typically have a rich and robust flavor profile. Porters often feature roasted malt flavors, including notes of chocolate, coffee, and sometimes caramel. The roasted character tends to be less intense compared to some stouts, resulting in a beer that can be more approachable for those who prefer a slightly lighter and less bitter profile.
Imperial IPAs: An Imperial IPA (India Pale Ale), often abbreviated as DIPA (Double IPA), is a beer style that takes the hop-forward characteristics of a traditional IPA to the next level. This style is known for its bold hop flavors, higher alcohol content, and a strong malt backbone that helps balance the intensity of the hops. Imperial IPAs typically have a higher alcohol by volume (ABV) content compared to standard IPAs. The increased malt bill and the use of more ingredients contribute to a stronger beer, often with an ABV ranging from 8% to 12% or even higher.
Red Wine: Red wine is a type of wine made from dark-colored grape varieties. The color of red wine comes from the skin of the grapes, which contains pigments called anthocyanins. During the winemaking process, the skins are in contact with the grape juice, allowing the transfer of color and tannins to the liquid. Red wine is typically served at a slightly warmer temperature than white wine, usually between 60-68°F, to allow the flavors and aromas to be fully appreciated and also making it a cozier beverage to drink when it’s cold outside.
WINTER HOLIDAY PROMOTIONS:
League nights or group nights are a great way to entice people to come back on a regular basis and generate consistent traffic on what may be slower week nights otherwise. With people wanting to escape the cold, there are several fun, social activities that can be enjoyed at your venue indoors. Depending on your concept and demographic, you may implement a dart league, pool league, trivia nights, or maybe even a boozy book club.
Issue participants a member card that they can bring back with them each week. Member card holders may receive exclusive discounts off their pours from the tap wall. Prepaid pour cards also make great prizes for the winners each night. National Trivia Day also takes place during the winter on January 4th, so if your venue hosts trivia, be sure to circle that day on your calendar.
December and January are exciting times for sports fans. It’s college football bowl season and playoff time for the NFL. If you’re a bar with a local college or professional team, you have to capitalize on these big game days. You may want to build some camaraderie with the local fans by offering a discount to anyone who walks in wearing the local team’s jersey or colors. Through the Table Tap system you can also set happy hour pricing.
The happiest hours are during the game (depending on the score) so you may want to lower your prices on the tap wall throughout the course of the game. If the local team wins, then you may reward fans by extending happy hour until an hour after the game as a postgame celebration. Don’t forget, one the biggest days of the year for Americans is also during the winter. Americans drink over 325 million gallons of beer on Super Bowl Sunday. That means they’ll want ice cold beer in their hands as quick as possible, so your self-pour venue will sure to be their top spot to watch the game.
The winter months have several holidays that are gold mines for promotions and events. Below are some ideas on how to celebrate each:
Christmas: The merriest time of year. Christmas parties are a part of the holiday spirit. Select a day near Christmas that acts as a holiday party for your loyal customers. Anybody with a member card gets an exclusive discount on their pours. Depending on your venue, you may also be a hotspot for corporate office parties. Reach out to local businesses to see if they might be interested in reserving your space for their holiday party. Christmas is also gift card season and pour cards make great stocking stuffers! Use prepaid gift cards as a promotional campaign. To increase gift card sales, offer customers a free $15 prepaid pour card with the purchase of a $50 gift card.
One trend that is becoming increasingly popular each year is Elf on a Shelf, but how about Elf on a Tap? Each day, move the elf to a different tap on your tap wall and lower the price of that beverage for the day. It doesn’t have to be a physical elf… Table Tap is the only self-pour system that allows the brand images and descriptions on screen to be completely customizable. You can upload a photo of an elf to that tap’s brand image so people know which one the elf is on for the day. You can also customize the description of that brand and write a creative story of how the elf got put on that tap.
New Years: New Years Eve is one of the busiest days of the year for restaurants and bars, so don’t be the one not having a party to ring in the New Year. The beer will definitely be flowing but champagne will be popping. Champagne gives you another opportunity to generate revenue through prepaid cards. If customers purchase at least a $50 prepaid card for the evening, they a receive a complimentary glass of champagne. If customers purchase a $100 prepaid card, then they receive a complimentary bottle of champagne
Valentine’s Day: A day for lovers and lovers of self-pour. What’s a more fun date than pouring your own beverage for you and your partner? Through Table Tap’s system, you can associate multiple IDs to one pour card. This means on Valentine’s Day, you can offer a promotion for “Couples Cards”. Any couple who shares a pour card/Couples Card may receive a discount. If you have wine on tap, this is also a great opportunity to offer discounted pours or even a free glass of wine for any couples that come in.
If you’re already operating with a self-pour system, we’d love to hear some your own promotional ideas that you have for the upcoming winter season. If you don’t have a self-pour system, but are looking for a unique way to increase sales in 2024, hit us up!
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