Running special deals and promos has become a more prominent way to boost your products and services.

The key to success in this is by communicating these promos to the right people—the ones who will surely react to it and help you grow your business by availing your products.

But there are just so many good offers and deals out there already that it’s become difficult to interest non-customers and customers alike.

So you want to make your special promos stand out from the rest of them? Check out these dos and don't on how to run your special promotions.


Why is it important to communicate your special promotions?

Consumers are always on the look-out for ways to save money and get the cheapest and best deals. Offering discounts and special deals is a two-way benefit to favor both your brand and your customer.

Through this special relationship, customer loyalty is more likely to be achieved. You establish ties with your customers by giving them a positive experience and constant excitement such as unique offers, discounts, and arrangements.

Another benefit is that you also stay profitable. If you think that your business is not reaching your sales goals, you can try to increase sales by offering these discounts and promo rates.


8 proven ways on promoting your food business:  

1. Present it nicely

As in any dish, much of its appeal relies on its presentation. Customers usually decide on their very first impression. From the title to the publicity material, formulate a concept that will capture your followers’ attention. The title “Saturday Scone Surprise” will be a lot easier to remember than “If you buy three scones on Saturday, you will get an additional scone for free.” A Halloween-themed layout design for your publicity materials would quickly attract parents who are looking for their children’s treats. 

To get even more accurate results, you can also use data in customizing your offers and deals.

Given that reach plays such a crucial role in marketing, you use  apps and software to determine which type of content will work for specific niche markets. Traffic and sales analytics are no longer new to savvy small businesses that are trying to figure a way to best promote their brands. If your business needs support on getting started check out our Food Service Marketing Training.


2. Spread the word via email and text

Once you’re done creating your content, make sure to share your offers first to your existing contact list. They are the ones who have previously engaged with your products and service already—so they’re more likely to be interested in your promo than most non-customers.

Reaching out through email and text  is a more personal and sincere way of approaching them and saying, “Hey, I know you can’t resist these crispy crusts. You might get interested with this 50% off deal for pecan, apple, pumpkin, and key lime pies.”


3. Share it on social media networks

Social media is inescapable. Everywhere you go, it’s there to inform people. That’s why publicizing your promo on these platforms has never been so crucial. You can also utilize its algorithm to target your audience based on demographics such as age, gender, preferences, location, field, etc. A simple Tweet of your menu with the hashtag #ThaiFood will entice Thai food lovers who are potential customers. A Facebook post about your sourdough bread product in the Sourdough Lovers Facebook Group can also gain traction. If you have an account on Pinterest, pin your food pictures associated with the offer and link it to your offer page.

Remember: people go online to interact and engage with others. That’s your best chance to catch their attention!  

Check out these social media dos and don'ts and best practices for the foodservice industry.

4. Encourage your customers to share it

Good customer relationships can turn satisfied customers into evangelists for your products. Not only do these customers buy from you, but they also get to work for you. Offer incentives and benefits to anyone who will introduce a new contact to your special deal, such as a coupon on their next order or something as simple as free bread. With the average person having more than 200 Facebook friends and Instagram followers, just one share can go a long way.

5. Sweeten the deal

If you have ever ordered a fries and burger combo from McDonald’s just to get a figurine cartoon character piece, then you already have an idea of what incentive marketing is. You have also learned that this strategy doesn’t have to be cost-heavy. Sometimes, it’s just fun to receive additional stuff out of things that you were going to buy anyway. In incentive marketing, always stress the benefits that they will get out of the deal. “Three pizza boxes and large caesar salad is on us!” In this scenario, pizza lovers get to have a free salad while you get to sell three pizzas. A sweet deal indeed.


6. Make friends and partners

Let’s say you operate a Taiwanese food hub and want to make a special deal for your beef noodle soup. Partnering up with the bubble tea shop down the street would be a power move to lure in their customers, who are in a similar niche group with your customers. Do you get where we’re going here? Wise partnerships need to make sense for both parties involved. Affiliate marketing means that you get to promote each other’s products in a single offer deal.

But always keep in mind that these are only efficient as long as you don’t give more than you receive.


7. Engage with the press

Magazines and newspapers remain on top of the list of best platforms to promote special deals.

How can you lure in a journalist to write about your deal? A promotional event with prominent activities and personalities are their weaknesses. Guest celebrities, speakers, or professionals and odd happenings – this is the formula to make your deals newsworthy. Remember that the media just need something solid to publish. An offer of a 21-day rump steak for $80 is not something they would report; a pig butchery class taught by well-known chef, however, is a show.


8. Reach out to influencers

Influencers are everyday people who have the power to affect the purchasing decisions of their followers. By partnering with them and letting them do their magic, your offer becomes more than a promotional tactic. Food especially looks good with extra lighting, special effects, and dramatic background music. Add to that a charismatic chef in charge of cooking it.

Jamie Oliver is known for recommending healthy and easy-to-cook meals. Recently, he’s been endorsing certain food ingredients along with quality kitchenware as well. With almost six million followers on Youtube, influencers like him can directly widen a brands reach and season it with their authority, appeal, and trust with their followers.

 Consider targeting micro-influencers or regional influencers that may have an affordable budget and are known to move the needle.

What not to do in the world of food promos:

  • Don’t promote the boring ones. Steer clear of basic items like an extra spoon or a free napkin that spark no interest. These kinds of items are not interesting enough to catch attention and therefore will go ignored. However, as in all cases, a little creativity will go a long way. Add a rose-colored spoon or a knitted napkin. Infuse your promo with some thought and inspiration that is on-brand. Don’t be afraid to spice things up!
  • Don’t be a copycat. It’s never going to work in your favor if you recycle others’ successful promotions. Audiences, especially those in the same market, will inevitably notice your replication of their ideas. It will make them lose your hard-earned trust. Worst case scenario is a lawsuit. The best option is still to be original. Take note that once you’re doing promotions, you’re not only doing it for a certain product but also your entire brand.
  • Don’t flood your customers. Establishing social media presence is vital in promotions. But spamming your followers with hundreds of promotional posts and emails every day will bug them. Keep a safe balance between educational and engaging content and promotional posts. One day, post an informative baking video or a unique bread recipe. Next, link your special offers.
  • Don’t forget to keep track. Yes, you’ve finally made it. Your layout design is bomb; you garnered likes in your posts, you gained bajillion followers. You think your job here is done – WRONG! How about your larger sales and promotional goals? Have you taken the time to reflect on them? It’s easy to get preoccupied when you see the analytics increasing, but do not lose vision of the big picture. The measure must include things like: Were there many customers who availed of the promo? How do they feel about it? Do we have more new customers? Was the promotion more about inventory reduction, brand affinity, or sales generation? Only when you’ve answered these questions can you conclude that the promotion was truly a success.