There are tons of new places opening up around town these days, and regardless of the quality of their food or drinks, or the prices attached to them, a lot of money is being spent in doing them up. Rent aside, these newbies have custom designed interiors, furniture, lighting, and even made-to-order staff uniforms which all cost mega bucks considering the fact that many of them aren’t just a new location for a restaurant chain.
Can you hear it knocking? Because of the sheer number of flower laden entrances next to a theater near you, many of them are looking for innovative ways to bring people into their doors. Hold an event. What better way than this to try your trade? How many times have people asked why you don’t open a restaurant? Why not go to one of these patina-free spots, and offer your services? How many We Chat contacts do you have anyway? And because football isn’t on every Sunday, what else have you got to do on the weekend? Alright, enough questions, and a few answers.
As a business owner myself, I’m more than willing to talk to anybody, as long as they give me a bit of notice, and they are determined. Tell the owner of the respected place your exact numbers, and show that proprietor your proof, i.e. your We Chat comments. Choose a time when they are particularly empty, and most importantly, give them an opportunity to make some pink ones. I, personally, like it when people tell me that they will let me sell drinks at our normal prices. Other laobans might want you to pay them a flat fee to use their place. And why not? Surely, you can either charge people an entrance fee to enjoy your efforts, or ask them to chip in. Just be clear to everybody at the onset. At the start, you’ve got to look at the long term effect. Remember that, in the beginning, before you’ve got a good following, you’re doing this thing for your benefit, and not to better the place you’re holding it in. And, I mean, you can do absolutely anything from preparing an appetizer, to doing a full blown out meal, to shaking up your own drink, to throwing on some new tunes. Hell, why not do a pot luck? There’s nothing more upsetting than seeing a beautifully done place that’s empty. That goes for the owners as well, but having said that, they do have to pay staff, and put their reputation on the line in case that event you hold is a flop, but it won’t be. After all, you’ve got more people you know than can fit at your kitchen table, now don’t you? Throw a few pictures of your event on your phone, and be sure to show everybody who missed the party. Hold enough of these parties, and people will begin to notice you, and you’ll be able to open the door to many other opportunities that are knocking. It certainly has happened before.
By Tim Hoerle