Using birthday emails to drive increased bookings

3 minute read

Birthday emails for restaurant bookingsBirthdays are a great opportunity to reward loyal customers and to get larger group bookings. You can’t just mass-market a birthday offer though. In order to maximise the opportunity, you need to contact each customer at exactly the right time before their birthday – a process that doesn’t scale if done manually.

There is a way to do this that scales beautifully though. Setting up a birthday email automation campaign lets you put your birthday marketing on auto-pilot, sending the right messages to the right people at exactly the right time for them. Once you’ve created the campaign and the rules, you can leave it running all year long.

We routinely see birthday email campaigns get 100% more opens and clicks for restaurant and hospitality clients.

It’s all starts with good data

Before you can run a birthday campaign you need to collect date of birth information from your contacts. The simplest way to do this is to ask! The important thing is to provide a suitable incentive. You can be direct and tell people it’s because you want to send them a great offer for their birthday, or you could offer an extra incentive like a discount or voucher.

To get this information for your existing list you can create a form asking for name, email address and date of birth and then email your list a link to the form, asking them to complete it to redeem your offer. You can make the process even easier for your subscribers by auto-completing the data you already know, so that they just have to fill in the blanks (ask our support team to show you how).

Then, set up your campaign

The number and timing of emails to send will depend on your proposition and the offer. If you are a restaurant owner and your aim is to get more group bookings then you probably want to send the first email 3 – 4 weeks prior to someone’s birthday, so that they have time to arrange a group. If it’s a simpler offer (for example a free drink) then 2 weeks is probably sufficient. Make sure to schedule a follow-up email much closer to their birthday as well, and perhaps a special one on the day.

Once you’ve decided on the sequence and designed your emails it’s time to set up the rules to trigger the messages at the right time for each person. It’s as simple as using Marketing Automation rules to schedule each message a set number of days before someone’s date of birth. Once your rules are set up the campaign will run each day, sending just to the appropriate people.