Day 37 – The Puzzle – How You Can Dominate Birthday Marketing At Your Restaurant

This one is tough for me to digest, how can we as an industry stand to benefit so much from an event like a customers birthday, but SUCK at marketing to get more of them?

There are a few days every year that many consumers mark on their calendars to go out to eat.  

One that budget’s don’t exist.  

One where the party size is much larger than normal.

Yes, you guessed it, THEIR BIRTHDAY.

What’s even more timely for me is the fact that my birthday is this week.  So with birthdays being top of mind, lets build the ULTIMATE restaurant birthday marketing funnel

1st – The OFFER!  This is your marriage proposal to the client, it’s you asking for a 1st date…it’s can’t SUCK!  

This week I’ve gotten 6 Birthday emails and 4 have had a STRING attached.  It’s my damn birthday, don’t give me a coupon.  Below are two emails I got that were 100% free, exactly how it should be.  Heck, one email I got was a free dessert when I spend $50 or more, at a restaurant you can’t talk out of for under $75.


2nd – Your digital nurture.  You should have email and text messaging hitting the customers 3-4 times during the month around their birthday.  I wouldn’t stack these on top of each other though. I’d think about an email 14 days out, then a text 7 days out, text the morning of and email later afternoon.  This way you touch the at different times.

– FYI, the text the day of SHOULD not promote your offer.  I think it’s best to have a great Happy Birthday graphic, say enjoy your big day and sign off the restaurants name.  

3rd – Targeted Facebook ads. You can target customers the week of and the month of their birthday.  You can use these ads to double dip.  First, they serve as a reminder for the customers who are already a member of your program.  Second, they gain new customers into your birthday program. You could spend as little as $1 per day on these ads, though I’d recommend $5 per day.

4th – PICK UP THE PHONE!  Scroll down and check out the message from a clients manager about a birthday call he’d made.  Let’s say you have 5,000 members of your restaurants birthday program who’s phone number you have.  That’s 100 or so calls per week, 20 per day. If you spread that across a few people it’s LIGHT WORK!  And 75% of the calls go to voicemail and it’s a simple voice message “Hey Mary, It’s Matt from your favorite pizza spot, Matt’s Pies. Just calling to say happy birthday.  We hope you have a great Bday and if you decide to celebrate with us we’d love that, you have a free dinner with your name on it.  Happy Birthday.”

It’s as easy as that and I will tel you this, the customers will be BLOWN AWAY!  You will be the only restaurant calling them and many times the ONLY PERSON calling them at all.  

5th – You’re NOT DONE!  Once they are in the restaurant, WOW THEM!  Every guest who’s celebrating a birthday should get a birthday card which includes a gift card for their next visit.  I’ve had restaurants tell me when they started doing this, others at the table would say “holy crap, how do I join?”  It’s a WOW experience and that simple gift card will go a long way for your best customers.

ALSO, don’t forget to check out the text below that a clients manager put in their internal system about the response from simply CALLING a customer on their birthday week.

In episode 603 of my podcast, Restaurant Marketing Secrets, I dive into this topic more…have a listen CLICK HERE

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