Finding the right way to market one’s private dining space can be tricky. “That’s a funny thing,” Scott Shor at Edmund’s Oast says, “we don’t really go out of our way to market.” Instead of paid advertising, the restaurant group relies on its reputation as a dining destination, which is built from the restaurant, bottle shop, brewery, and all the events those spaces host. Edmund’s Oast also naturally benefits from its location in tourist-heavy Charleston. Word of mouth is key, and Shor’s goal is for repeat business. “When we get a corporate client in, if we nail it and they’re very happy, they’re going to come back for more,” he says. Ben & Jack’s in New York City takes a different approach: “It’s outreach, that’s the No. 1 thing,” Admir Alibasic says.“If you just open up the space and expect people to start calling and emailing for private parties, that’s going to take a while.” Marketing to corporate clients and through Facebook is a must, he says. “You have to utilize those outlets. Everything helps, from email blasts to a text message based system, social media.”Alibasic alsosuggests looking into marketing through Google, so the restaurant pops to the top when someone searches “private dining.” “That’s a big boost,” he says.
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