Playing "Restaurant Rook" from time to time is a fun way to engage your customers and fits neatly into a 5-8% marketing budget. A basic deck of Rook playing cards can be purchased for under $10 from any variety store.
Not only is the game enjoyable at the time, but the marketing buzz it generates is exponential compared to your average coupon or advertisement response. Some of the immediate benefits of Restaurant Rook include:
- all of the players have a good experience
- over 70% of the customers either win or enjoy watching someone else win
- 20% of players actually win something they want to tell others about
- about 5% win something big enough to brag about
- the contest generates an eye-catching marquee sign out front, "Play Rook to Win"
- the winner's list makes a great blog post
- mini-blogs can be posted to your own social networking sites before, during and after
- some of the winners will post their enthusiasm on their own social networking pages, and
- an in-restaurant bulletin board, featuring the list of winners, continues to generate chatter in the lobby
To play the game, create three documents: One for the front door and two for the counter where the game will be played. Tape one onto the counter facing the staff and the other facing the customers. All three fliers should contain the rules, but only the one taped to the counter facing the customers should include spaces where the winners can write down their own names.
Note: About 20% of your average customer count will win, so make enough "winner's name" spaces for that many people.
Here are the "Restaurant Rook Rules" to post:
1. Customer places and pays for order.
2. Employee shuffles the entire deck which contains one Rook card and four "10" cards.
3. Employee fans cards, upside down, toward customer.
4. The customer who paid for the order selects any 2 cards from the deck.
5. A "10" card gets you a 10% refund on your entire order.
6. The Rook card itself gets you $10.00 cash back (or the total you spent, whichever is less).
7. Customer prints name on winner's chart and indicates whether they got 10% back or $10.
8. If desired, customer may check the deck for the Rook and "10" cards, either before or after the draw, or both. Employee will shuffle cards before each draw.
Next time you want to generate some marketing buzz, energize your staff, or celebrate your customers, play a game of "Restaurant Rook."
Restaurant owner and media guest, Marnie Swedberg, has appeared on dozens of television and radio talk shows plus in newspaper and magazine articles. She is the webhostess of several resource sites for authors, speakers, leaders and business owners, plus is the co-owner/manager of the family's restaurant (M&K Takeouts) and the family's retail store (Soulutions) and espresso cafe (Over Coffee). Visit her hub at http://www.marnie.com to review other helpful resources.