Run low, mid, and high cash flow forecasts for 25, 50, and 75 per cent of previously forecasted sales
The zero revenue or nominal revenue lockdown period we’re currently in will prove to be much easier to understand than what all of our companies are entering into as the economy comes back to life. As staff is brought back onto the payroll and the operating expenses of the business begin to generate, many of our businesses will go through the highest-risk period of this crisis. Understanding your company's burn-rate and the unit economics of the different scenarios on the front-end will enable proper labour planning.
Make your restaurant feel like a safe spot to guests
The first step in combating coronavirus is to make your restaurant as clean as possible. The EPA has created a list of disinfectants that are effective at killing SARS-CoV-2, which you can find here. (Note that regular soap is effective. The virus is coated in an oily membrane, which means it is disintegrated by soap and water.)
Pay special attention to any surface customers touch, like light switches and doors, and any system that circulates air. Provide antibacterial gloves for your team, especially if they handle cash. (Some operators are going temporarily cashless.) Finally, many restaurants have scheduled multiple daily professional cleanings. Take every initiative you can to keep your restaurant disinfected.
But don’t just clean to make your restaurant safe.
Send a message to your customers that your restaurant is a haven from what’s outside.
Leave a hint of disinfectant in the air. Have your bussers make performances of wiping down tables and chairs after each guest leaves. Put up signage touting your frequent and committed sanitizing efforts. Add disinfectant napkins to service.
Make an abundance of caution part of your brand. Put language about your efforts on your site and in your booking flow. If you choose to put more space between tables, broadcast that on social media. Do everything you can to make guests seek out your restaurant as a place of refuge.
Lastly and most importantly, if you are not able to guarantee sanitary conditions, consider closing your restaurant.
Create Compelling Content
We don’t want to belabor Bill Gates’ often-quoted “content is king,” but the impact of content on brand growth is hard to deny. Creating unique content regularly is a great way to increase brand awareness, strengthen your brand reputation, and keep customer attention, even while you’re shut down.
People are online now, more than ever before, as many of them are stuck at home, glued to their smartphones and laptops. So, what better way to nurture customer relationships than through captivating content that speaks directly to their needs and interests during this time?
The best part is that content is relatively easy to create – you can do it just by using your smartphone (more on that in a moment).
So, what kind of content could you create to boost your restaurant marketing efforts?
Spilling into open spaces
From potential city-wide open-air café bars to limited capacity and table-service only – how are pubs and bars across the globe planning to reopen under social distancing measures?
Restaurants and casual dining Specific guidelines
- Individually wrapped condiments and sauces should be offered on request and put with the plated food, not left on tables
- Cutlery to be brought to the customer with the food and condiments rather than customers helping themselves or left on the table
- Develop your table plan and arrangement based on the physical distancing guidelines operational at the time.
- Customer contact with commodities (e.g. menus, trays, napkins) should be limited to what is necessary or designed in such a way that cleaning/replacement is carried out after each use. Menus left on tables/table talkers discouraged in favour of other forms of display to the customer. Consider the use of single-use/laminated menus brought to the table
- Use disinfectants and sanitisers that are effective against bacteria as well as cold and flu viruses, as recommended by the current government advice which can be found here:
- Cleaning regimes for kitchens should reflect the need to reduce risk from coronavirus as well as maintaining all normal expectations relevant to a food business regarding hygiene
- Control movements of staff to maintain mandated social distancing measures where possible i.e. include one person at a time allowed in the chilled stores or dry stores or the changing rooms and toilet.
- Hand washing of glassware, plates and cutlery should be avoided where possible with glassware washed separately from plates and cutlery.
Overseeing client encounters during the lockdown
Clients in China rushed to adjust their utilization propensities during the lockdown by changing to portable requesting and home delivery. For Starbucks, 80% of requests were made on a PDA during the lockdown, of which 30% were delivered to the client, and half gathered as a takeaway. For KFC, 84% of requests were from computerized channels, including advanced cell, convey stages, and a booth with portable instalment, in the first quarter of 2020, an increase of 29% compared with the same period a year ago.