Going out as a family is one of life’s little pleasures, even though an outing can be challenging when you have young children. As business owners, we all know that for parents keeping kids happy and entertained while visiting a restaurant or sitting in a waiting room can be demanding. In order to attract families to your business you will need to go that extra mile and provide a little more than just your average service.
By putting in the extra effort and creating marketing strategies aimed at families, you can provide more tailored and desirable solutions to your customers’ problems. This type of investment will definitely have an excellent return.
Why attract more families to your business
There are businesses that don’t welcome children, such as certain fine-dining restaurants. Which is absolutely fine because some customers (even parents!) want a child-free experience. However, the majority of businesses have a lot more to win by catering to families. Methods such as providing kids activity books for restaurants are a good strategy for the following reasons:
- Families are loyal and help with customer retention
Children play an important role in a family’s choice when it comes to various services. If kids loved a place, they will ask their parents to visit again, which translates to repeat business. Also, families are less likely to experiment because they don’t have too much time to explore a variety of options. Once they enjoyed an establishment, they will come back for more.
- Bring new customers through word-of-mouth
Adults having children are more likely to interact with other parents because their kids play together. Having a family as a loyal customer will bring other families at your business through word-of-mouth.
- The greater the number of people, the more money spent
Families are obviously bigger than individuals and couples so you have more customers eating at your table or paying for your service when kids are welcome. It is easier to upsell to an existing customer than to acquire new ones and support additional customer acquisition costs.
- Creating a good vibe for your business
Families may bring noise, but they definitely bring joy. The noises of children laughing, playing, and running around will motivate your team to strive to offer the best, while also attracting other customers, with or without kids of their own.
- Attracting mature customers
Customers who have a family have reached a certain age and maturity and therefore will often have the financial power to purchase more and at a higher quality.
Ideas for attracting families to your business
There are many ways you can attract families to your business, such as providing activity packs for children or offering family specials. Here are some effective strategies you can implement to stand out as a family friendly business:
- Offer kids menu options if you are a restaurant establishment
Having a kids’ menu will make children and their parents feel relaxed. You don’t necessarily have to stick to the traditional kids menu containing chicken nuggets and hot dogs – you can offer a healthier, more natural option.
Offering a kids’ menu is appreciated by parents who will not have to spend money on a full meal or share their plate with the little ones. Kids are not only picky eaters, but they can also be very independent and want to have their own plate at the restaurant’s table.
Choose a simple menu that appeals to parents as well – it must be something fairly nutritious but still attractive to children. Offering a healthy kids menu will not only put parents minds at ease when trying to decide what to order, but also helps kids have a healthy and fun dining experience.
Another thing to keep in mind if you want to serve kids is making dinnertime flexible. Families with babies and toddlers may prefer to eat earlier than other guests. Check with parents if they prefer to eat together or to serve their meals when they kids are finished eating.
- Kids menu placemats
Why not provide your kids menu on a fun activity placement that they can draw and colour on. They can be offered to families to keep children busy before and after they are done eating. One of the most popular kids’ menu placemats in Australia is our Busy Nippers mat which can be used both as place mats or standalone activity mat. The mats come in four fabulous designs; Mermaid, Pirate, Outback and Rainforest and can be over-printed with your logo and kids menu.
- Create a kid play area
A children’s play area should include toys, puzzles, and activity books. This option is suitable for not only restaurants but also for waiting rooms. We all know that kids often get bored sitting in waiting areas which can cue a meltdown. So, why not help the parents out and provide some activities for their children. Find various activities such as puzzles, games, toys and activity books that are themed around your profession to educate children and get them more comfortable in your office. Just like this Activity Bag for Belmed Medical. This kids activity pack was customised with a medical theme and were handed out to all children visiting their GP and dental clinics. Our Busy Nippers Activity packs can be fully customised for your brand from concept to completion to meet their needs of your business and customers.
- Offer family discounts
Many restaurant chains offer free kid’s meals to support parents and carers while schools are out. Perks such as free kid meals or a free colouring and activity book with purchase at a retail store do not cost you very much but can achieve a lot in terms of customer satisfaction and retention.
- Adapt your business model
Look at your business model and try to find ways to make it budget friendly for your family customers but also profitable for you. The most important aspects to look at are appealing to all ages, engaging to children and teens to attract parents, offering family-centric activities, proposing activities where everybody can participate, or allowing adults to sit back and relax while children play.
- Make it clear kids are welcomed at your business
A sign stating ‘Children are welcome at our restaurant’ will attract families like a magnet. Once you have decided to cater to families, make sure to communicate it visibly not only on the premises but also online.
- Promotions for kids
Seasonal activity packs for kids around special holidays such as Christmas, Easter, Anzac Day produce great results because customers are more likely to spend during holidays and they will put their money where they feel most welcome and valued. Busy Nippers offers a selection of 10 different seasonal activity packs that will help both parents and children get into the holiday spirit. You can add your company brand to make it more personalised and make a big impression on customers.
- Participate in community events
Customers like to interact with people rather than organisations, and will only trust you when they feel you care about them. Attending community events not only makes your image more family-friendly, but also comes with advantages such as:
- Getting to know your customers better and collect valuable data about them;
- Encouraging feedback on websites like Yelp or Google My Business;
- Increasing brand awareness;
- Reaching a new audience by raising your local profile;
- Boosting sales by uplifting foot traffic;
- Leveraging social media before, during, and after the event;
- Increasing credibility and creating deeper connections with potential customers.
- Host kid events
These events can be a huge success and attract families to your business if you follow the main rules, such as knowing the purpose of the event, considering what would be meaningful to various categories of guests, offering the right type of entertainment, and providing appropriate food options.
Another highly important aspect is ensuring the safety and security of participants. Kids have a lot of energy and won’t sit still, with consequences ranging anywhere from a cut on the knee to a lost child who cannot find their parent.
Create procedures to follow in case any issue emerges and ensure you have people certified in first aid and attending to accidents. Family fun days should be just as ready as schools or kid activity centres to handle emergencies; parents can also pay less attention than usually, thus increasing the risk of something going wrong. Make sure your venue is gated and safe for kids to wander around so parents can also relax and enjoy the day.
- Advertise on social media
The last 12 months have shown us that lots of activities can be completed online and that digital marketing has definitely surpassed traditional promotion methods. Parents are very active on social media as many of them have been using the Internet since their teenage years.
Social media is a favourite pastime of parents because it is there at any hour of the day and night, allowing them to disconnect a little or have a chat with family and friends. So, you will absolutely want to stay top of mind for your social media followers.
Any business can make their premises kid-friendly, no matter how much or little free space they have. From implementing simple methods such as creating a kid’s zone to offering kids activity books for restaurants. These strategies that attract families to your business will increase customer retention, sales and will project a fun experience for all patrons. Parents especially will love you for supporting and providing tailored and desirable kid friendly solutions and enabling them to enjoy their outing as a family!