Beverage Service Revitalized Marketing During COVID-19

If you are a bar, a distillery with a tasting room, or a brewery, you are facing challenges due to the numerous restrictions put in place because of COVID-19. After mandated closures, upon reopening, it wasn't enough just to say "We're Open!". In today's environment, attracting customers takes more than that. You need a way to set yourself apart from others so that YOUR establishment is the one people choose.

In this post, 
we'll share tips on how to revitalize your marketing to better stand out from your competition. 

Adding to the stress and challenges, you've also had to make adjustments to operate more like a restaurant:
  • Offer food from a licensed retail food establishment
  • Provide on-premise food consumption
  • Follow seating requirements that follow social distancing requirements while still being responsible for the same overhead
  • Get creative and offer drinks or drink kits for take-out, curbside, or delivery
The plan:
Make changes that take away the fear of going out and give customers confidence that your establishment is a safe place to be. Make changes that exceed the guidelines:
  • Clean work surfaces with viricide on a set schedule.
  • Wear face masks at all times and wear them properly.
  • Maintain workstations and dining at recommended distances - adjust your tables according to the latest guidelines.
  • Take temperatures of workers. 
  • Set up a delivery service pickup zone.
Be sure to check the FDA's updated schedule for cleaning and to stay up-to-date on face mask rules and ordinances.

The Execution:
Fact-based marketing! After you have set up your bar, brewery, or distillery, set up in a way that will help to remove any fear that customers may have, tell them that story! Show your customers in your marketing messages the steps that you've taken to create a safe environment for them. This will help to build their trust and, ultimately, choose your establishment for their dining.
  • Take pictures of the things you've put in place. Ideas of things you can capture in photos:
    • Your front door and hostess setup
    • The table spacing
    • Your delivery service pickup zone
    • Happy workers who are wearing masks the proper way
    • Your restrooms with improved safety features
When you are forthcoming with this information and you show your customers the changes you've made, it will give them a sense of respect towards you and help to build trust because they can see that you are willing to share the facts.

Additional Resources:
View the Slide Deck
Reopening Your Business After COVID-19: A Business Case Study
How-To: Limit Cash Out by Negotiating Your Lease Payment During COVID-19

CEF’s advisors provide helpful suggestions of an educational nature that are not intended to mandate or supersede the business practices or decisions of your Company, its owners, or managers. The information provided in this guide does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available herein are for general informational purposes only. You should contact your attorney to understand your rights and for legal advice about your specific situation.
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