Kona Grill: Offer something for everyone
Scottsdale, Ariz.-based Kona Grill recently refreshed a 10-year-old unit in Chandler, Ariz., that highlights the patio area.
Jenny Elkins, Kona Grill’s vice president of operations, said, “Patios are the great equalizer. You may be there to enjoy a refreshing cocktail and a small bite, while your dining partner is there for a glass of Malbec and a perfectly prepared rib eye.”
Elkins, who oversees operations at 23 units in 16 states, offered these three tips to driving patio sales:
Make sure your guest knows the full menu is available. “Offer the lunch or dinner menu and interact with the guest in the same manner as you would in the dining room,” Elkins said. “Never assume a guest on the patio is there solely for cocktails and happy hour food. Let them know they have options.”
Provide your guests a way to interact with each other and discover the brand. “For example, create a fun, conversation-starting coaster and add a QR code that links to an interactive website or encourages social media check-ins,” Elkins suggested. “Your guests are now reminded just why they chose your patio in the first place and are now interested in sharing the information with their fellow patrons and friends.”
Encourage late-night visits to the patio. “Chances are, your weather is twice as nice in the twilight hours and this is when guests come back out to play,” Elkins said. “Create a distinct atmosphere that is inviting and completely different from your daytime patio scene, and you will see a whole new crowd coming to join you. Consider offering a reverse happy hour menu and keeping the kitchen open just a little later while the evening weather continues to welcome guests to your establishment.”