This time of year is always the busiest – not only are you starting to think about 2015 planning but you have to get through all of the holiday and celebration occasions tucked into Q4. October is the start of a huge season of celebration, starting with Canadian Thanksgiving at the beginning of the month, going right through to Halloween, US Thanksgiving, and all the Christmas events too, not to mention the retail-based occasions, such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
All of these are great opportunities to get your catering offers out to your existing clients and also to grow some new business to close out the year – providing outstanding service at a high pressure time may mean an opportunity for future catering sales throughout the following year. If your new customers see how well you have served them in their time of need, then you can be sure that they will remember that for their future catering requests, or even for referrals within their communities.
Many tend to focus on the main holiday days and the meals associated with them, and assume that, because their offerings aren’t specific to holidays, that they can’t provide a service that will help customers out. However, think about all the other meals that are around those key moments. For example, Thanksgiving provides 12 other occasions to provide food to families and groups gathering on that weekend – you can provide breakfasts, lunches, evening meals, or even light platters for easy eating. With people being so busy preparing for the larger meals, they can rely on restaurants to provide for the other meal opportunities.
Also, it’s not just about the traditional holiday events themselves either – this time of year is huge for retail based events, such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday. With retail staff working much longer hours than normal, many organizations like to provide meals and snacks for their staff during these long shifts – put together some special offers for retail businesses in your area and reach out to local store managers to let them know how you can help. This not only grows your business potential for now and the year ahead, but you take the stress off these companies, allowing them to focus on making their own sales this season.
Finally, this time of the year is a perfect opportunity for many groups to get together to celebrate the year past and thank staff for their dedication. Often, these groups will gather in community centers or halls and require food services to add to the celebration. Look for those venues that don’t have kitchens or food preparation facilities – these are perfect opportunities to offer catering services for larger groups, and these venues are always working with different vendors to offer their clients a selection of caterers for their special events.
For more help with planning your holiday catering sales for the year, check out these resources:
As always, the Catering Institute is here to help, so if you are looking for some additional advice or suggestions to grow your catering sales this holiday season, please give us a call at 1-877-6-MONKEY.
Wishing you the best with your catering efforts!