2013 Promotional Calendar Guide

Planning a promotion is time-consuming, but the return on your investment is a crowded bar and ringing register. To help you get a serious jump on this crucial work, we’ve assembled our 2013 Promotion Planning Guide, including a calendar of events and holidays around which you can build sales-sparking promotions and some expert how-to advice.

With this guide and calendar 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.

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The key is to plan ahead, way ahead. A highly successful promotion needs more than a few days of thought and execution behind it.   You should have a minimum of six promotions a year. Now, that’s a minimum. If you have the bandwidth to create more, shoot for once a month – it’s easier when you have a plan in place. To be in a position to produce an effective promotion for your venue you must first:

Go Back: Take a step back and objectively review the promotions that you executed over the past year.  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 on at the wrong time or to the wrong audience. With a little adjusting it could be a winner the second time around. But, you want to make sure that you do your homework before reinventing a failed promotion.  Make sure to look at your ROI and get feedback from staff and regulars. Ask yourself what you learned last year and how can you apply what you learned to this year.

Dig for Data: Highly overlooked but one of the most important factors to a well-executed promotion is data-gathering. So hit the streets and research the competition. What are they doing now and what has been successful for them in the past? In addition, you need to find out what supports your promotion. This includes trends, new flavors, products and industry news. Look at major metropolitan areas like New York and Las Vegas for points that support your promotion.

Money: It is imperative that before you begin the planning process you decide on what your budget for the promotion is. You don’t want to launch a promotion and find out half way through that your ROI isn’t compensating for the money you are putting into the promotion. You need to make sure you decide how much you should spend, when to spend it and how to spend it. In general terms, you should allocate a portion of your revenues toward promotions. 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.

Outreach: You need to give thought as to the right blend of outreach. Each type of promotion has a distinct function and should complement your overall brand. It’s always best to make sure that you have a variety of outlets rather than overloading one specific source.  Make sure to use both modern and traditional forms of marketing to get your guest interested in your promotions.

Sponsors:  What you ultimately need to ask yourself before reaching out to potential sponsors is “Would I invest in this idea?” The proposition needs to be beneficial on both ends. Before diving in head first it’s best to be prepared with statistics [i.e. 10% increase of sales volume, x amount of cases are needed, said amount of sponsored marketing materials]. If you’re well-organized and can deliver results, sponsors will be lining up to work with you.  

Promo Calendar: A well thought out promotional calendar helps to maximize the impact of your dollars over the year.   Look though our 2013 Calendar, then open your own and mark start dates, for when your planning will begin, and launch dates for the promotions that you want to capitalize on in the coming year.

Execution:  If you want to stand out from your competition you must be different! 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. 

Track and Follow-up:  All of the effort put into your promotion means nothing if you cannot track the results.  Did you meet the 10% increase you planned? If so, reward the individuals that contributed. If not, find out why and discuss how to make it better. Schedule a post-promotion meeting where you can discuss what went right or wrong and evaluate the overall program.

National Thank You Month
National Blood Donor Month

January 1
National Bloody Mary Day
New Year’s Day

January 4
National Trivia Day

January 7
NCAA BCS Championship Game

January 11
National Hot Toddy Day

January 19
National Popcorn Day

January 21
Martin Luther King Day

January 23
Chinese New Year

January 24
Beer Can Appreciation Day

January 25
National Irish Coffee Day

American Heart Month
Black History Month
Great American Pie Month

February 2
Groundhog Day

February 3
NFL Super Bowl Sunday

February 11
National Make a Friend Day

February 14
Valentine’s Day

February 15
Singles Awareness Day

February 18
Drink Wine Day

February 20
President’s Day

February 21
Mardi Gras

February 22
National Margarita Day

February 27
National Kahlua Day

National Irish American Heritage Month
National Nutrition Month
National Women's History Month
Red Cross Month

March 2
Employee Appreciation Day 

March 3
National Mulled Wine Day

March 8 
International (Working) Women’s Day

March 10
Daylight Savings Begins

March 16
Freedom of Information Day

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

March 19 - 21
Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show

March 20
Spring Begins

March 29
National Mom and Pop Business Owners’ Day,

March 31

National Humor Month
National Food Month
Alcohol Awareness Month

April 1
April Fool’s Day

April 6 – 8
March Madness Final Four

April 7
World Health Day
Holocaust Remembrance Day
National Beer Day

April 13
Scrabble Day

April 19
Amaretto Day

April 20
Food Day

April 22
Earth Day

National Barbecue Month
National Hamburger Month
National Salad Month

May 5
Cinco de Mayo

May 6
Beverage Day

May 8
World Red Cross Day

May 12
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

May 27
Memorial Day

National Iced Tea Month
National LGBT Pride Month

June 3
National Donut Day

June 4
Hipster Beer Day
National Cognac Day 

June 5
World Environment Day

June 6
NBA Finals Begin

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

June 29
Tour De France

National Anti-Boredom Month
National Hot Dog Month
National Ice Cream Month

July 1
International Joke Day

July 2
National Anisette Day

July 4
Independence Day

July 5
Bikini Debut: 67th 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 20
First of Ramadan

July 23
National Hot Dog day

July 24
National Tequila Day

July 27
National Scotch Day

Family Fun Month
National Golf Month

August 8 – 11
PGA Championship

August 1
National Girlfriend Day (Girls)

August 2
National IPA Day

August 4
US Coast Guard Day

August 5
International Beer Day

August 12
Vinyl Record Day,

August 16
National Rum Day

August 19
National Aviation Day

August 25
National Whiskey Sour Day

August 26
US Open (Tennis) Begins

Hispanic Heritage Month
National Piano Month
California Wine Month

September (TBA)
NFL Opening Day

September 2
Labor Day

September 4
Rosh Hashanah

September 11
9/11 Remembrance Day
Patriot day

September 14
Yom Kippur

September 15
National Crème de Menthe Day

September 16
Mexican Independence Day
Rum Day

September 18
National Cheeseburger Day

September 20
National Rum Punch Day

September 21
International Day of Peace
Oktoberfest Begins

September 22
Autumn Begins

September 25
National One Hit Wonder Day

September 28
National Drink a Beer Day

September 30
National Mulled Cider Day

Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Domestic Violence Awareness Month
National Pizza Month

October (TBA)
MLB World Series

October 1
World Vegetarian Day

October 4
Vodka Day

October 5
World Teacher’s Day

October 7
World Smile Day

October 14
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

Aviation History Month
Native American Heritage Month
Peanut Butter Lovers Month

November 1
All Saints Day

November 4
Islamic New Year

November 5
Election Day

November 11
Veterans’ Day

November 12
Happy Hour day

November 14
National Spicy Guacamole Day

November 21
Great American Smokeout

November 24
National Espresso Day

November 26
National Cake Day

November 28
Thanksgiving Day

November 29
Black Friday

Bingo Month
National Fruit Cake Month
National Eggnog Month

December 1
World AIDS day

December 4
National Cookie Day

December 5
Repeal Day (end of Prohibition)
Hanukkah Ends

December 7
International Civil Aviation day
Pearl Harbor Day

December 8
National Bartender Appreciation Day

December 10
National Lager Day

December 15
Bill of Rights Day

December 20
National Sangria Day

December 21
Winter Solstice
National Hamburger Day

December 24
National Eggnog Day
Christmas Eve

December 25

December 26
Kwanzaa Begins

December 31
New Year’s Eve
National Champagne Day

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