6 Ways to Effectively Market Limited-Time Offers and Seasonal Items

In the last five years, 64% of top restaurants and retailers have increased their offerings of limited-time offers, or LTOs. Why? LTOs and seasonal items:

  • Increase revenue. Starbucks made $80 million in yearly revenue on their seasonal Pumpkin Spice Lattes alone.
  • Generate buzz. Love it or hate it, Starbucks’s Unicorn Frappuccino has inspired over 155,000 Instagram posts.
  • Keep your menu new and exciting by offering customers variety (and scarcity). McDonald’s McRib Sandwich and Shamrock Shake are both examples of creating cult followings for menu items by offering them only at certain locations and times of the year. 
  • Experiment with new dishes before adding them to your permanent menu. For example, Taco Bell’s Quesarito started out as an LTO, and now it’s a bestseller.
  • Attract new customers and turn recurring customers into fans. In one survey, 2 in 5 diners said that an LTO would make them more likely to visit a restaurant. 

Of course, launching an LTO isn’t enough…you also need to market it…

How to Get the Most of Your LTOs and Seasonal Menu Items 

Get the Word out with Social Media

Generate buzz long before launch with a carefully crafted social media campaign for your LTO or seasonal menu items. Start with delicious food photos and unique hashtags and add customer incentives for sampling your new menu item (“Try our new chicken sandwich FREE with a Facebook check in at any of our locations on these dates…”). And don’t forget promotional videos—a recent study projected that videos will comprise 82% of all online content by 2022, so they are quickly being considered social media must-haves. 

Tease your LTO with Digital Signage

One study found that digital signage increased unplanned customer purchases by 70%. At Raydiant, our restaurant customers use our system to design and display high-res marketing materials for their in-house displays. Our easy-to-use interface gives them the ability to make dynamic digital flyers and promotional posters that look professionally designed. Raydiant’s partnership with PosterMyWall gives our users access to thousands of HD and 4K images and video templates from which to make beautiful, branded content for your LTO and seasonal promotions. 

Feature your LTOs on Digital Menu Boards

There’s a reason McDonald’s spent $6 billion dollars on digital menu boards and other upgrades. Digital signage increases revenue and simplifies the ordering process, and creates a better in-store experience for customers. 

Raydiant digital signage allows you to create and make instant updates to your restaurant menus for vibrant digital menu boards that your customers will love. Not only are digital menu boards easier to read than static menu boards, they are also more visually interesting, not to mention easier to update as needed. And Raydiant’s intuitive user interface makes it easy to schedule dayparting, seasonal, and promotional menus so that they display at set dates and times. 

For restaurants with multiple locations, you can update only the menus at locations offering your LTOs and seasonal items, while other locations’ menus remain unchanged. Raydiant gives you full control over your menus—not only with how they are designed and displayed on-screen, but what menu items they offer at any given time.

Add your LTOs to your Online Menus via the SinglePlatform App

Did you know that more than 90% of customers look at online menus when choosing a restaurant? But with all of the ordering apps out there—UberEats, DoorDash, and GrubHub among them—it’s hard to keep all your menus up to date. Add limited time offers and promotional dishes and it gets even more complicated. Raydiant solves this problem by offering SinglePlatform as part of our digital signage offering. With the SinglePlatform app, you only need to update your menu in one place and it will automatically update on all the ordering platforms where your menu appears. SinglePlatform also updates your own website and your digital menu boards, ensuring that no matter where customers find your menu, they are looking at the most current and up-to-date version. 

Create Social Proof with In-house Instagram Displays

Add LTOs and seasonal promotions to your in-restaurant Instagram strategy by using Raydiant to display your best food photos from your feed on your restaurant TVs. Boost LTO visibility and get customers excited for upcoming seasonal offerings all at once, on your social media and in your restaurants. Get your customers involved by having them share your branded hashtags when posting photos where they’re enjoying limited offerings and seasonal fare. Combining social media and digital signage not only reinforces the continuity of your brand messaging, but it boosts your brand’s trustworthiness as people see posts from other happy customers.

Get Customer Feedback by Offering Loyalty Program Perks

One way to further incentivize your loyalty members is by offering them a sneak preview or free sample (or both) of your newest LTOs and seasonal dishes. This gives your loyal customers a feeling of exclusivity and investment in your brand, since they know their feedback will inform your decision to continue offering the new menu items or not. Some restaurants have found success by holding preview evening, where loyalty customers are invited to the restaurant to try the new fare and provide feedback, along with having an opportunity to socialize with other members. 

Make Bold Promotional Displays with Raydiant

Let Raydiant help you make your LTO and seasonal campaigns a success without hiring a graphic designer. With Raydiant, you have all the tools and templates you need to craft gorgeous digital posters, flyers, videos, and other promotional content for display in one or more of your restaurant locations. We’ve simplified the process for you, with our intuitive, cloud-based user interface that is both easy to use and easy to access from any device connected to the internet. 

Installation and setup couldn’t be simpler either, as our system uses a plug-and-play device called a ScreenRay that plugs into your TV’s HDMI port. After a few setup steps, which we walk you through with simple on-screen instructions, you’re ready to design, upload, and display your own digital signs! Why not try Raydiant digital signage for your next LTO or seasonal promotion?