What do you have planned for Halloween?
By Dean McNeal
It is interesting to see how many venues plan a costume contest for Halloween and not much else.
It is hard enough to compete with all the other bars on a regular night, but it takes a real master to stay ahead of the pack on a “Party Holiday” like Halloween or St. Patrick’s Day, (for examples) and maintain a packed house.
What is your location doing differently than the others, ie: your competition? Many patrons scour publications like this one, call around to locate the biggest and best prizes for their costumes, compete to win, and then try to run over to the next closest costume contest, leaving your place because that was all you had planned.
Mind you, I am no marketing guru, nor do I even have a degree in marketing, but after years of working with bars, clubs and casinos, I’ve seen a lot of ideas work, and many fail as well.
It’s amazing to me that the marketing department for a given establishment will end up handling all the entertainment, even though they don’t know the first place to find good entertainment. And those locations that have worked with directly with the entertainment, wind up trying to do their own marketing. The problem is, they’ve been confined to their own four walls and haven’t seen or experienced any fresh ideas.
Do more than just wait for your customers to come streaming through your doors. For example, plan a party that no one will want to leave. Maybe a ‘80’s Night’ theme party with an 80’s costume party. Hire a great 80’s band, give away 80’s memorabilia, bring back Atari’s Pong video game, and have a Pong contest on your big screen. Do something more than the average venue on your block. Plan a real party!
So many great ideas and opportunities are missed on these kinds of holidays because of the lack of creativity that goes into your party planning. Make your party an event to not be missed. Do more than just the expected, or the minimum. Do not depend solely on your entertainment alone to pack the house. Be the difference. What are you going to offer at your establishment to stand apart from your competition this Halloween?