Guy Holmes, marketing consultant at Captivate Restaurants, warns that now is the time to start planning in order to achieve a profitable Christmas.
It may seem very early to start thinking about Christmas but it's going to be more competitive than ever this year.
December is the most profitable time of the year for all hospitality businesses but this year will be bleak for many. With redundancies on the rise and tighter budgets than ever, attracting those profitable office parties is going to be tough and key to many's survival.
By starting now, restaurants, bars, pubs and hotels are giving themselves the best possible chance to have a great end to what has been, for most, a tough year.
Marketing budgets are, of course, also tighter for most operations, so every pound counts. Many restaurants won't be spending any money on expensive advertising in local papers and magazines this year. Instead, other marketing strategies will come to the fore.
It's crucial that the most is made out of your database but there are five other things restaurateurs should do to help attract office parties:
It really is crucial to start the process now and, don't forget, deposits paid now are a useful and sometimes much needed addition to cash flow.