3 Holiday Restaurant Advertising & Marketing Strategies for Boosting Revenue and Holiday Cheer

As the festive spirit takes hold, a light shines on the restaurant industry with nearly 60% of consumers preparing to celebrate by dining out, with a further 50% planning to order takeout or delivery for their holiday gatherings and a quarter of these festive diners plan to indulge in both experiences (based on a recent survey from the National Restaurant Association). This means your restaurant brand has an opportunity to share in the creation and participation of your customers holiday memories while also adding to your bottom line.

This holiday season make it so that your restaurant group captivates your audience, increases visitation, engages and deepens relationships all while growing revenue. Let’s explore effective holiday restaurant marketing and advertising strategies that blend offers, creative visuals, and loyalty programs to entice both new and returning customers.

1. Crafting Irresistible Holiday Offers

  • Seasonal Menus: Introduce limited-time holiday menus featuring festive dishes. This creates excitement and urgency, encouraging customers to visit before the season ends. Did you know that 59% of consumers say they’re more likely to purchase an item on a restaurant menu if it’s described as “seasonal”? In fact, according to research and consulting firm Technomic, 49% also said “seasonal” menu items are more appetizing, and 39% believe “seasonal” dishes are healthier.
  • Gift Card Promotions: While there have been shifts in category performance and channel usage, performance indicates continued growth as loyal guests show their support by gifting their favorite dining experiences to family, friends, and colleagues. Offer special deals on gift cards – like a bonus $10 card for every $50 spent – may not only boosts immediate sales but also encourages repeat visits. They don’t shrink margins, unlike coupons or promotions. When gift cards are redeemed, customers usually spend an average of $59 more than the gift card’s total value. And if the entire value of a card isn’t used, it’s just more motivation for a customer to return. According to Paytronix, gift card sales have nearly recovered to pre-pandemic levels, surpassing $326 million in 2022.
  • Catering Promotions: 62% of users would rather cater a meal than make it themselves to save time (Pinterest). For catering services, offer early-bird discounts or special holiday packages and bundles to attract both business and personal gatherings.

2. Engaging Through Creative Visuals

  • Social Media and Email Marketing Campaigns: Engage existing and current customers through social media and email marketing. A recent National Restaurant Association report indicated that these two channels will have quite an impact on consumers holiday choices this year. Make sure campaign visuals are thematic and seasonal relevant to appeal to your customers mood this season. Consider launching a themed social media campaign showcasing your holiday specials with vibrant, high-quality images and UGC or UGC-like videos or also engaging customers through contests, like sharing holiday moments at your restaurants or your catered meal at their home – for a chance to win a meal or gift card. Don’t forget about sending out visually appealing email marketing featuring your holiday offerings, promotions, gift card reminders along with mouth-watering photography to entice your email list.
  • Window Displays and Interior Decor: Transform your restaurants and store locations into a holiday haven with festive decorations. This not only attracts passersby but also enhances the dining experience for guests, prompting them to share their experience online.

3. Enhancing Customer Loyalty

According to Deloitte’s 2022 “Evolving Trends in Brand Loyalty and Consumer Behavior” survey, 86% of restaurant loyalty members rated transactional benefits such as earning and redeeming rewards as important. This part of a restaurant’s loyalty program drives frequency, share of wallet, and check size and is key to have dialed in.

  • Drive Engagement with Exclusive Deals for Loyalty Members: Reward loyalty program members with exclusive holiday offers, like special discounts or double points on certain menu items.
  • Increase Transactions and Trials with Holiday-Themed Loyalty Challenges: Create holiday-themed challenges within your loyalty program. For example, visiting five times during the holiday season earns a free dessert or a significant discount on the next visit.
  • Personalized Communication: Use data from your loyalty program to send personalized holiday greetings and offers, making customers feel valued and more likely to engage.

Added Bonus: Capitalize on Holiday Cheer for Year-Round Growth

The collective eagerness to partake in the holiday dining out trend presents a golden chance for restaurant brands to fortify their growth for the coming year. Capitalize on seasonal momentum is key. Engaging new and returning customers during the holidays not only heightens the immediate festive cheer but also serves as a strategic move to gather and build first-party data (POS, website visits, email, loyalty). This data is critical to better understanding your customers, instrumental in unveiling authentic audience insights, which can significantly refine your paid advertising strategies and drive better business outcomes.

When you team up with Liberty you can tap into these audience insights. Our expertise lies in customer behavior analysis, where we are able to tailor your advertising with precision, ensuring both effectiveness and efficiency in campaign performance.


By blending compelling offers, visually engaging marketing, and a robust loyalty program, your restaurant can not only increase visitation and catering revenue during the holidays but also strengthen customer relationships for long-term success.

Remember, the key to effective holiday marketing lies in creating a festive and warm atmosphere that resonates with the spirit of the season, driving both cheer and revenue to your restaurants. What your restaurant brand does this holiday season can be capitalized on for growth in the new year and beyond.

Happy Holidays and happy dining, we hope this season brings you positive abundance in all aspects.

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