There's been a lot of talk about the Millennial Generation nowadays. If you're a Baby Boomer, like me, you're probably scared of the up and up attitude of these civic-minded, socially responsible kids. My generation is losing power. But we don't need to be.
I've been in the restaurant business for over thirty years. I run a tight operation. Still, the economy hit me hard. I lost some very loyal customers and started to slip underwater. I figured that I needed to bring in new business to support my family. I changed, and now I'm on easy street. That means a lot in the my business. Here are nine sure-fire tips for attracting Millennials to your restaurant.
My place used to be called "Old Dan's Diner". I fixed that. Now I'm "dan". No capitalization is key here. It's minimalist, rebellious, and ambiguous. Millennials love ambiguity; it's all they know in this ever complicating world of technology, demographic shifts, and forgotten HBO GO passwords.
Panache is the name of the game. If you can't be "seen" outside an establishment, what good is the restaurant? Outdoor seating also allows for patrons to talk more loudly than if they were indoors. How will anybody know what you think of Breaking Bad if you aren't yelling your opinion?
They will all say that, "It's going great!"
Millennials won't have families for a long time. This generation will always be between two things: jobs and various student loans. They can't afford kids. Any reference to children will probably create intense angst, loathing, and screenplay ideas within your customer base. Better not remind them at all.
Not all of you will have access to her, but if she does show up, expect literally all the twenty-somethings of Los Angeles and New York at your doorstep.
Generation Y will never have kids. They will have little balls of fur that they treat no differently. Accommodate them. Provide dog food and water bowls. If a dog starts to bark incessantly, do nothing-- would you tell a six year old to shut up?
If you're selling hearty dishes for the penny pinching working man, stop. Remember, Millennials aren't paying for food; they're paying for image. Would you be caught eating anything less than an eleven dollar craft PB&J?
Nope. Just serve everything very pretty, and on square plates. It's easier to take Instagrams that way.
This is pretty sweet. If you're over thirty and don't plan getting any new-age tattoos, you won't be welcome at your own establishment. Millennials are still working out their authority complexes; old people painfully remind them of their pretty typical adolescence. Just send one of your kids to do the job.
That's really all you need to be successful with Millennials. If you have any questions, so do they. So many questions.