Restaurant Coupon Marketing: The 2-For-1 Deal Is Dead

Restaurant coupons are a double-edged sword.  Used the right way, they can get you a swarm of new guests. Used the wrong way, they will train your existing customers never to buy your food without a discount.

You can hardly surprise anyone with a 2-for-1 deal these days. You can hardly entice them either. A discount that is attached to an entree is like a vacuum cleaner sucking the cash out of your wallet. This is NOT the right way to run a restaurant.

Here’s the deal.

A discount is just one of the ways to create value for your customers. One of many.

Once you understand this, you’re on the right path to what my good friend Nathan Gilder calls “clever coupons.”

Here’s an example of a clever coupon:

“Free Homemade Brownie with Footlong Sub!”

Some guests have a weird craving for chocolate after downing one of our famous subs. Well… we give in… for the next three weeks you can get a free, delicious homemade brownie with any footlong.

This is a real one used by a restaurant owner who enjoyed an extra $1,225.87 in profit that month.

Clever coupons are the kind that:

  • create curiosity;
  • offer a bundled deal, never a blatant discount;
  • give away something that your customers want and that is NOT an entree;
  • require customers to do something to qualify for the special;
  • are unique and unusual.

Nathan has put together a Special Report entitled Using Restaurant Coupons and that’s where I found the example above. The report has several more outstanding examples in it. Go there now. See it for yourself.

(Note: There is a video of the new online coupon system. Watch it first, then request the Using Restaurant Coupons report using the form below the video. It’s yours gratis.)


Say "enough's enough" to half-empty dining rooms, humdrum shifts, and wondering which half of your marketing budget was wasted.

73% of teenagers and adults are walking around with a smartphone (iPhone, Android, or Blackberry) in their back pocket. They use is for everything: Playing games, checking emails, texting their friends and ... googling your restaurant's website. If your website is not mobile ready, you're missing out on a lot of walk-ins. Download our Restaurant Commando's Mobile Readiness Checklist.

Watch this quick video about how to set up a Birthday Club that practically runs on an auto-pilot. This is going to be the easiest, fastest money you will ever create in you restaurant business.

About Chief Commando

Well, actually, Chief Commando is two people, Troy Authement and Alex Makarski. Troy and Alex combined their knowledge and experience to help independent restaurant owners and emerging chains create more growth and more profits in their businesses. Together, they provide a unique blend of expertise not available anywhere else in the industry.


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