2015 Marketing & Promotions Planning Guide and Holiday Calendar

2015 Marketing & Promotions Planning Guide and Holiday Calendar

In order to increase traffic and make that register ring throughout 2015 your small business needs to avoid dangerous promotions and focus on the ones that you are guaranteed to reap the benefits of.

So how do you make sure that happens?

By following our 2015 Marketing & Promotions Plan and utilizing our Holiday Calendar! Our plan aims to give you practical strategies that are easy to implement over the course of the year. It will provide focus and direction while encouraging you to think outside the box to create promotions that are unique to your venue.

It’s important to understand how each one of the promotions that you choose to run fits into the overall “big picture” of your marketing and promotions scheme. Therefore, it’s useful to view each promotion as a single step in a series of activities designed to build sales. Mapping them all out at the beginning of the year allows you to see how individual promos fit together to make a bigger impact on your business.

Ultimately, we’re suggesting that you look at not just your Monday through Sunday promotions on a weekly or monthly basis but planning through all 52 weeks of the year – reevaluating the plan at 26 weeks.

With this plan in hand, along with continuous updates on Nightclub.com, you’ll be armed with ideas to attract crowds every day of the year! The more you plan, the easier and more successful your promotions will become.

Where to Start:

  • Identify a weekday that you see as having potential to increase sales.
  • Establish a revenue goal based on past sales history for that particular day.
  • Budget appropriately taking into consideration all the costs associated with running a promotion.
  • Based on your main focus carefully direct your promotions at the right audience.

A systematic approach to building sales can produce amazing results if you plan in detail and cover all the bases. Do not fall prey to the latest trends or fads. Not all of them will compliment your brand or relate to your target audience.  The most effective promotional plans are cohesive and well-planned. 

The key is to be organized and have a game plan. Promos are like little mini-stage productions: They need to be planned, budgeted, cast, rehearsed and directed. Each member of your team needs to know what his/her role is and what's expected of them.

Here we have provided some key elements for creating your marketing and promotions plan to help you get started.

What is the purpose of creating this marketing plan?  Do you want to increase new customer traffic? Provide incentive programs for loyal customer? Build brand awareness through social media channels? Or, all of the above? It is best to clarify the main focus of the plan upfront.

Go Back
Did you create a marketing and promotions plan last year?  If so, take the time to look back and objectively review the promotions that you executed. Analyze why successful promotions drove traffic to your business. Also evaluate what didn’t work so that you don’t make those same mistakes again. Sometimes a great idea fails because it was executed at the wrong time or promoted to the wrong audience.

Target Audience
Research shows that a carefully executed promotion plan directed at the appropriate audience significantly increases the effectiveness of the promotion. Identify the exact types of customers you want to frequent your establishment over the next year. It is impossible to market to everyone therefore this helps you to concentrate on specific groups that fit your theme and brand.

Budgeting is a key element in planning your marketing and promotions plan. Make sure that you know how much money you can allocate to your promotional strategies each month. This will determine how many promotions you can realistically implement based on the allocated portion of revenues that you put towards the plan. Promotional spend varies from venue to venue; therefore, you need to determine what works best for your budget. If you’re a new venue budget more than you think you need.

Based on the previous steps and the information that you have gathered it’s now time to define the key elements of the marketing and promotions plan and the lead time needed in order to execute successfully. Without deadlines little will get done. Lay out the opportunities that you would like to take advantage of and what/when tasks need to be completed.

Tactics include defining exactly what you are actually going to do for each promotion. Create a central theme and develop a message to support that theme. Get creative and fine tune the preliminary details of the promotions prior to implementation. Most people start at this step and then wonder why their promotions didn’t work.

Research the competition. Again, honesty is key. What are they doing now, and what was successful for them in the past when it comes to marketing? Marketing and advertising adds up fast and if you are not careful, it will kill your profits. There are tons of inexpensive ways to get the word out like social media or local papers looking to do a story. Tip: Invite the local media to try your food and beverage for free. Build advocates and they will help market for you. Also, don’t be afraid to hit the streets. Most important: Keep it simple. If it takes more than a sentence to explain, it’s too complicated.

A great promotion means nothing if you can’t execute, so make sure your staff is fully prepared and don’t spare any details. Designate someone from your staff to drive the promotion. Then provide them with a Promotional Execution Guide. Include the following:

  • What — A summary of the promotion and goal(s).
  • When — Pertinent “headline” dates (start, end, contest dates, finals, etc.).
  • Who — Who is doing what and by what date? Sponsorships, POS materials, drink development, running the contest (if there is one)/contest rules, media, staff, food, etc.
  • FAQ — Think of all of the things a customer or server may ask and make sure you have an answer. Can someone reserve a table? If so, who and how? Who handles reservations, and is there a special reservation list? Is there an employee incentive? How does it work? What are the prizes? Are there food specials? What are they? A FAQ list can be hung on the employee bulletin board or attached to paychecks to make sure everyone is aware of the event as well as when and how it works for staff and guests.

Make sure to check in with the appointed staff member in order to keep them on track and provide them with the proper support to ensure success. 

Evaluation of the marketing and promotions plan should take place on an overall level at the end of the year and an individual promotions level. Did the promotions work? If so, great! But, what elements contributed to the success of these promotions that can be applied to the others? What if your master plan didn’t work? What can you learn from the promotion and make sure not to repeat.

Click on the icons for each month to see even more profitable promotional ideas. 

JanuaryJanuary Promotion and Holiday Calendar
National Thank You Month
National Hobby Month

January 1
National Bloody Mary Day
New Year’s Day

January 4 
National Trivia Day

January 11
National Hot Toddy Day

January 19
National Popcorn Day
Martin Luther King Day

January 23 
National Pie Day

January 24 
Beer Can Appreciation Day

January 25 
National Irish Coffee Day

FebruaryFebruary Promotion & Holiday Calendar
Black History Month

February 1
NFL Super Bowl Sunday

February 6
National Wear Red Day

February 11 
National Peppermint Patty Day

February 14 
Valentine’s Day

February 15 
Singles Awareness Day

February 16
President's Day

February 17
Mardi Gras

February 18 
Drink Wine Day

February 19
Chinese New Year

February 22 
National Margarita Day

February 27
National Kahlua Day

MarchMarch Promotion & Holiday Calendar
Red Cross Month

March 3 
National Mulled Wine Day

March 8 
International Women’s (Working) Day
Daylight Savings Begins

March 16 
Freedom of Information Day

March 17
St. Patrick’s Day
National Green Beer Day

March 20 
Spring Begins

March 29 
National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day

March 30 - April 1 
Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show

March 31 - April 1 
VIBE Conference 

AprilApril Promotion & Holiday Calendar
National Humor Month

April 1
April Fool’s Day

April 7
World Health Day
National Beer Day

April 13
Scrabble Day

April 18
National High Five Day 

April 19
Amaretto Day

April 20
Food Day

April 22
Earth Day

MayMay Promotion & Holiday Calendar
National Hamburger Month

May 5
Cinco de Mayo

May 6
Beverage Day

May 8
World Red Cross Day

May 10
Mother’s Day

May 13
World Cocktail Day

May 16
Wear Purple for Peace Day

May 18
Armed Forces Day
World Whiskey Day

May 21
National Waiters and Waitresses Day

May 25
National Wine Day
Memorial Day

May 28
National Hamburger Day

JuneJune Promotion & Holiday Calendar
National LGBT Pride Month

June 4
Hipster Beer Day
National Cognac Day 

June 5
World Environment Day

June 8
Name Your Poison Day

June 10
National Iced Tea Day

June 14
Flag Day
National Bourbon Day 

June 19
National Martini Day

June 21
Summer Begins

JulyJuly Promotion & Holiday Calendar
National Hot Dog Month

July 1
International Joke Day

July 2
National Anisette Day

July 4
Independence Day

July 5
Bikini Debut: 69th Anniversary

July 10
National Pina Colada Day

July 14
National Grand Marnier Day

July 16
Ice Cream Sundae Day

July 19
National Daiquiri Day

July 23
National Hot Dog day

July 24
National Tequila Day

July 27
National Scotch Day

AugustAugust Promotion & Holiday Calendar
National Sandwich Month

August 1 
National Girlfriend Day (Girls)

August 4 
US Coast Guard Day

August 6
National IPA Day

August 7 
International Beer Day 

August 12 
Vinyl Record Day

August 16 
National Rum Day

August 19 
National Aviation Day

August 25
National Whiskey Sour Day

SeptemberSeptember Promotion & Holiday Calendar
California Wine Month

September (TBA)
NFL Opening Day

September 5
Cheese Pizza Day 

September 7
Labor Day

September 11
9/11 Remembrance Day
Patriot day

September 15
National Crème de Menthe Day

September 16
Mexican Independence Day

September 18
National Cheeseburger Day

September 19 
Oktoberfest Begins

September 20
National Rum Punch Day

September 21
International Day of Peace

September 23
Autumn Begins

September 28
National Drink a Beer Day

September 30
National Mulled Cider Day

OctoberOctober Promotion & Holiday Calendar
Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October (TBA)
MLB World Series

October 1
World Vegetarian Day

October 2
World Smile Day

October 4
Vodka Day

October 5
World Teacher’s Day

October 13
Columbus Day

October 16
World Food Day
National Bosses Day

October 24
United Nations Day

October 25
World Pasta Day

October 27
Navy Day

October 31

NovemberNovember Promotion & Holiday Calendar
Peanut Butter Lovers Month

November 1
All Saints Day

November 6
National Nacho Day

November 11
Veterans Day

November 12
Happy Hour Day

November 14
National Spicy Guacamole Day

November 19
Great American Smokeout

November 23
National Espresso Day

November 25
Black Wednesday 

November 26
Thanksgiving Day

November 27
Black Friday

DecemberDecember Promotion & Holiday Calendar
National Eggnog Month

December 4
National Cookie Day

December 5
Repeal Day (end of Prohibition) 82nd Anniversary

December 6
National Bartender Appreciation Day

December 7
International Civil Aviation day
Pearl Harbor Day

December 10
National Lager Day

December 15
Bill of Rights Day

December 20
National Sangria Day

December 21
Winter Begins

December 24
National Eggnog Day

December 25
Christmas Day

December 31
New Year’s Eve
National Champagne Day