Halloween is a time that brings out the best — and often the worst — in people. Women tend to turn any profession into a “naughty” costume; in fact, it’s hard to escape the inevitable Halloween transformation of even your closest friends. We may not all like Halloween, but I’m sure most of you are like me and like money, especially making money! I really like money, and there is no better time to make some easy cash than with Halloween-inspired promotions.
Think of me as your Halloween godmother: I’ve got a few pointers for fast cash and situations to avoid that will help make this holiday a profitable one for your business. It’s easy just follow this acronym: L.A.M.E.
Lose The Ego
Halloween is about dressing up and getting candy —it’s a fun holiday — so don’t feel like you have to make promotions too sophisticated. Just because you consider yourself upscale or trendy doesn’t mean you can’t have fun on Halloween. Get some edible eyeballs and dry ice to make a few spooky libations while creating some Halloween-themed point-of-sale (POS) materials and watch the curiosity of your patrons turn into quick (and easy) cash. Your patrons will certainly understand what you're doing for the holiday and appreciate your temporary transformation.
Always Check The Costumes
It’s a great idea to let staff members dress up; it gets them involved, excited and in a better mood. However, never underestimate an employee’s taste level when it comes to appropriate costumes. Provide guidelines to your team members and “how-to tips” on making homemade costumes to help with budget. You may even make it fun by having an internal costume contest before the evening’s festivities.
Checking IDs and ensuring no person under 21 is drinking is difficult enough on normal nights out but on Halloween things can get even more complicated. If you decide to host a Halloween event and encourage costumes, make it a general rule that no patron may wear a fully face-covering mask at any time during your party. Remember, anyone can look over 21 if they’re wearing a facemask.
Enter to Win
If you decide to host a Halloween party and offer a costume contest, make sure it is relevant to your guest base and has a compelling prize. Play to your clientele. A “Pimp and Hooker Ball” may be perfect for some establishments, but if you operate a red-rope entrance bar or nightclub, think about creating a “paparazzi” theme and host a “celebrity look-alike event” accompanied by a step-and-repeat outside your entrance. Also, make sure the time is right for your contest; the goal is to get people there and have them stay all night, so don’t have a 10:30 p.m. contest final with a $50 prize if your outlet stays open until 2 a.m. — wait until midnight. Additionally, partner with local businesses to offer really cool prizes. Do you know your local Apple representative who can help you raffle off an iPad? Maybe you have a cousin with a car dealership who can donate $1,000 in gas cards. Think about it!
I really do like Halloween, mainly because it generates money. Get some for yourself and have a SAFE and happy Halloween!