By Nick Fosberg   |   May 31, 2017

In this episode Nick reveals 2 out of the box Father’s Day promotions that can work for just about any bar or restaurant.

In This Episode You’ll Learn:

  • How Nick figured out if either of these 2 promotions would be a success, before making the final call to put these into action.
  • The “How Well Do You Know Your Dad” contest that will bring humor, fun, and excitement to your bar or restaurant
  • The BBQ With Dad promotion and why it’s the PERFECT gift for Father’s day
  • Why you SHOULDN’T run the BBQ With Dad promotion on Father’s Day and when the best time do it is.

Links Mentioned In This Podcast:

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Read the Transcription

Welcome everybody to the Bar Restaurant Breakthroughs podcast episode 16 where I’m going to talk about out-of-the-box “Father’s Day Bar and Restaurant Promotions”. I’m actually going to give you guys the two different promotions that I’m going to be running at both of my bars.

The first one I’ll give you is the one that we’re running at “Rural on Tap” and despite the fact that we serve zero food whatsoever at Rural, we’re not allowed to have a kitchen. Me and my neighbor were having a conversation the other day and he’s a big barbecue guy.

He comes from four generations of barbecue pit masters and they participate in a wide variety of competitions and so forth and he told me that he is interested in starting doing barbecue (more professionally). He bought a new big trailer and he’s going to start doing catering and outdoor events. He’s like “I’d love to do something down at Casey’s, one of your places and told me, “You know what, why don’t we do a Father’s Day promotion called the barbecue with dad.”

And so as we started talking and again, don’t think that you might not be able to do this. It can be done in any kind of parking lot. It might not fit your bar or your restaurant but still think about this promotion and start thinking outside of the box.

How could you apply this to maybe some other type of promotion or at least how can this start inspiring you to think outside of the box? Now, stay with me here for a second. What we’re doing is we’re bringing him in.

And really you can bring in any other kind of cater-barbecue-type of person who can come out and do this but we’re calling it “Barbecue with dad.” Pretty much, what we’re going to do is he’s going to teach people how to create different rubs, how to prepare the different meats; chicken, fish, shoulders and also ribs. And so he’s going to teach how to do the different rubs based on their palate.

Then he’s going to teach them how to prepare everything. He’s also going to show them how to cook everything as well and then, obviously, we’re all going to eat it afterwards. We’re going to pair the barbecue with different whiskies, different bourbons and also different craft beers to go along with it.

So that’s kind of the first thing that we’re doing at “Rural on Tap” and at first…I didn’t know if this was going to work out that well. Would people come out for this? I thought that this would be the perfect gift for dad.

I thought this might not be the best thing to do on Father’s Day however if the dad can open something up on Father’s Day with his “barbecue for dad”, let’s make the event occur afterwards. So I sent out an e-mail to our entire e-mail list first to say, “Hey we’re thinking about doing this (#BBQ4DAD).

I asked them if they would be interested and asked whether this would be the perfect thing for Dad and if so, to click a link which pretty much just took them to a Google Form and asked them if they would be interested. We told him it costs between $30-$35 bucks a person and that this is what we’re thinking right now.

And we asked, “Would you be able to come the Saturday after or the Sunday after and which would work best for you, what times would work best for you etc.” We just got some information from the market first, finding out if this is going to be a promotion that people want to do before we spend more time and energy into trying to promote it.

The results from it (the email blast) was that we got about 40-42 people thus far that have responded back. Eight of them said, “yes I’m definitely interested and let me know when I can buy tickets.” For the rest, the majority of them said, because one of the questions on there (the form) was, “I’m 90 percent in, I’m not 100 percent sure but most likely.”

The majority of those people said yes, so when we look at those numbers, you multiply that by two because that’s one person filling it out and obviously two people might come or maybe they are even more if they have two or three kids. So it seems like it’s going to be a pretty successful event from just what we’ve gotten back so far and nobody else is doing anything like this in the area and we thought that this will be a great way to get some people down to the bar and just kind of think outside of the box. That’s the first one we’re doing “BBQ WITH DAD.” And it’s something you could do in your parking lot.

Bring in some barbecue person or even if you know how to BBQ yourself and just make an event with a Father-Son theme, where they can learn these different things and just have fun together and make it a father son day.

The next promotion we’re doing. I’ve never done this before but I kind of stemmed it off a promotion I had done in the past called our “Singled out promotion”. At Casey’s what we’re going to be doing is a promotion called, “How well do you know your dad.”

What I’m trying to do is get at least 15 groups of people who want to sign up for a contest for a chance to win a 50-inch TV. Now they win that TV obviously for their dad and the way that this works is that it is a type of game show. We’re going to come up with 15 questions for the dads. Additionally, we’re going to come up with 15 questions for the son or daughter. And what we’re going to do is, once we get everybody there we’re going to pull everybody to the back of the bar and all the dads are going to fill out the form with their answers. We’re then going to make this fun interactive, entertaining. You know (Questions like) “if your dad was stuck on an island for a year what would be the top three things he would need.” Or “what if your dad runs out of his favorite drink. What’s the next thing he’s going to go to? “So we’re starting to come up with all these fun kind of unique questions make it fun and entertaining.

They’ll (the participants) will write all those answers down and we’ll bring the kids back as well just so that there’s no way that they could cheat or anything like that. We’re going to base it on a point system.

So as we’re asking these questions we’ll bring all the dads up in front of the bar and we’ll ask them the questions and get their answers back and we’ll see who got the most points. And then we’ll change it up and now the kids will go up. “How well do you know your son.” “How well do you know your daughter.” And so, they’re kind of both competing together to see how well they know each other and whoever has the most points is going to end up winning the TV.

So what I did was I just kind of put out an email about the same thing just to see if we would have some kind of traction for this (promotion) and it seemed we got eight people to sign up within the first day saying that they would love to do this and sub-sequentially I told them what the promotion was going to be about. We’re going to do half price food for everybody who gets into the contest as well.

So those are just two ideas I wanted to share with you I mean how well do you know your dad we’re going to run that the Saturday before Father’s Day. Because I don’t think we get that big of a turnout.

We’re going to do it actually the Saturday before from like seven to nine or six to eight. We’re still working on the times and putting it all together, but that’s just something really simple to set up.

That’s fun entertaining. It’s a game show. I think we’re going to also add in a game of “flippy cup” in between so we’ll have all the dads up there at the bar with the cups where they flip them and whoever flips over the Cup three times and gets it to land, gets points and maybe we’ll give points to first place, second place and third place so that the winners get ten points to first place, five points to second place and maybe three points to third place or something like that.

But then we can just add some games and competition into it (the event) as well and just kind of make it more fun and interactive. So those are just two different out of the box Father’s Day promotions that we’re going to be running this year and I just wanted to share those with you guys as well because any bar restaurant owner could really apply this (to their business). Anybody could do the second one. How well do you know your dad I mean, anybody could put that together.

The barbecue one, you obviously have got to find somebody who can do that, bring down a trailer and put all that together. It’s got a little more steps and maybe a little bit more costs are involved there. But what I worked out with him (The BBQ Pitmaster) is that we’re just going to split the profits on it. So he’s going to bring his food because we’re doing all the marketing for him which isn’t going to cost us anything because we’re going to have way more than enough people just from using our e-mail list.

That’s why I love “LOVE!” having databases and e-mail lists because for starters I can find out if the market likes the promotion first and if they do that’s all I need. If we know it’s going to be successful already and we have enough people for it because we can’t have 100-200 people for this event, however from 40 people filling out saying, “Hey I’m 90 percent sure I want to do this” you know should be pretty easy to fill the event.

So again those are just two quick promotional ideas that you guys run for Father’s Day. Hope you guys got some value from this if you have any questions. Again if you’re on the blog page you can leave questions down below or you can always reach out to me at



Nick Fosberg

Nick Fosberg is known as one of the highest paid, marketing and promotional consultants in the bar & restaurant industry and he owns 2 bar / restaurants in the Chicagoland area. He's famous for creating some of the highest grossing digital marketing promotions in the history of the bar & restaurant business..... without spending a penny on marketing. All done through e-mail & Facebook posts. 

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