Tips For Making $$

making the big $$ mozilla

Here I have listed some ideas on how to make more money for everybody in the bar, from the owner to the waitress. Some of these are not practical in all areas of the country, but maybe this will help you come up with some ideas of your own.




darts table shuffleboard ring toss
trivia karaoke crab crawl
egg drop scheduled drink specials luau
frozen drink machines crawfish boil comedy nite

Check with your liquor distributors often. They are always happy to help with your promotions. They want to make the big bucks too! They are great for making signs advertising upcoming events and drink specials. Many of them will be more than glad to give you certain products to dress up a special occasion as well.

Always remember to keep the glasses full. One way to increase your average per head is to offer salty or spicy snacks gratis to all of your customers. Remember, you have to give a little to make a lot. If things are slow order some buffalo wings or nachos and set them out. If you or your boss is too chinzy for that, popcorn works well. Make sure you pop it in the bar. Nobody can resist the smell of freshly popped popcorn! Offering things to or for you customers helps to create a more friendly environment.

One more tip-DON'T LET ANYONE DRIVE DRUNK!! It's not worth it. See if you can arrange something with the owner or managers to insure that the Otis Campbells of your bar have a ride home. Depending on the laws in your state, you could possibly serve quite a bit of time in the slammer if you should carelessly serve someone.


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Electronic darts have become more popular than ever. Dart tournaments are easy to run and can draw quite a crowd. Pick an especially slow night to have one and run it consistently every week. It sometimes takes a bit for word to get out about your awesome tournaments. Charge an entry fee and give the pool back to the winners. Your making enough money off the beer! Steel tip darts are also making a comeback, but they can also be dangerous in the wrong bar. Remember dart players, like pool players, like to drink!

Table shuffleboard is great fun and not often seen anymore. I've seen several bars with these lately and they seem to be a big hit. They are also a great draw for tournaments. They don't take up much space and don't require a lot of upkeep.

Ring Toss-This game can be quite entertaining and costs nothing. Hang a string from the ceiling near a wall and tie a ring on the end of it (about 3" diameter). Next, mount a hook on the wall about chest level. Grab the ring and walk away from the wall several feet. Hold the ring up and let it swing towards the hook. The object is to catch the ring on the hook.

TV Trivia is becoming very popular in bars these days. Your customers can compete against each other and other participating bars across the states. It gives the customers ranking in the bar and geographically. This helps to keep the customers entertained especially on a slow nite.

Though it can grate on your nerves quickly, karaoke can really increase your bar's profits and clientele. It can be a rough start and may chase away a few of your regulars, but you'd be surprised how many people are willing to make asses of themselves in public!

The crab crawl is a contest using hermit crabs. You need a large aquarium or table with sides high enough to keep the crabs from getting out. Paint numbers on their backs and let'em go. The first one to cross the finish line wins.

Egg drop- I first saw this crazy idea at The Sidetrack in Tuscaloosa Alabama. The owner got a large board (2 and put them together) and drew off evenly matched squares, numbering them 00-99. He laid this out on the floor. Next, he bought a couple of live chickens. Every time a customer bought a drink they got a ticket. Then after all the tickets were given out, or after a predetermined time, he would set the chickens loose on the board. The 1st number to get "dropped on" won. Winners got bar tabs, t-shirts, etc.

Scheduled drink specials are kind of tricky. Check with your state alcohol board before trying these. Start with a special drink price- ie. $.50-then every hour increase the price by a certain amount-ie. $.50-until they reach the regular drink price. You can also feature a certain beer or drink each nite. Again, some beer distributors will give you a discount for advertising their beer. If you do decide to feature a specific beer make sure to let them know.

Luaus- Depending on what part of the country you're in, winters can be extremely dull and uneventful. Try organizing a luau! You can get good deals on leis when buying in quantity. Call a local paper company or party store. Don't forget the Limbo Contest! Pool cues work perfectly for these. Buy a pig, rent (if you don't already have one) a frozen drink machine, and check with your liquor rep about what promotions they have to offer.

Frozen drink machines are great money makers. Owners often steer clear of them because they see them as a big expense. Actually the profit margin on them is quite high. Lanakai makes a very good line. Making your own simple syrup (base) for the drinks also helps cut down on the cost. Just mix hot water, sugar, and sweet and sour mix together. Depending on what sweet and sour mix you use, the proportions may vary.

Crawfish boils are not financially possible in certain parts of the country, but for certain areas they are a great draw. You'd be surprised how cheap they really are. Boil them with some corn and serve potato salad, or whatever you're in the mood for. Just remember to set out plenty of trash cans!

Comedy nite- Comedians can be a great draw. Depending on how much $ you want to spend, you could have 1-3 acts ranging from opener to headliner. Charge a cover at the door and offer food and drink specials during the show. Check out both local and national agencies. Prices can vary greatly. You could also host your own amateur nite, but I would strongly suggest private auditions before you let him or her go on. Who knows, you may discover the next Sinbad or Foxworthy! The Comedy Catch has a good amount of information.

beer bar

If you have any good ideas or have seen any worthwhile promotions, please let me know. I'll check them out and possibly add them to my site, with a credit to you.

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