Creating a Chef Cooking Class Series
Whether you love or hate our era of the “celebrity chef,” one thing’s for certain, it’s good for business.
But you don’t need to be a national celebrity to capitalize on your chef status—your patrons are already fans of yours! So capitalize on this local “fan status,” and diversify your offerings to go beyond the food you serve.
Cooking classes are a great way for guests to get facetime with you and learn something new—which, as a chef, part of the joy in the craft is sharing your passion of food and cooking with others, right? The other great thing about cooking classes is that you get to choose the day and time of the class (Are Tuesday’s traditionally slow at your restaurant? Not anymore!). Finally, it’s a guaranteed ROI (that’s return on investment) if you require guests to prepay for the class, or at least have guests register with a credit card number on file to secure the reservation.
From there the sky’s the limit. You can do a short class followed by a meal or tasting period, or opt for just a class itself and let guests take home their goodies. If the class focuses on in-house restaurant favorites, you could even use it as a training opportunity for new staff members both in front of house and back.
OK, you may be thinking, I’m working 80 hours a week as it is, how am I supposed to carve out time and play teacher?
My answer? Find a way. Because in life, we do find a way. Whether you delegate other tasks from your plate or pull in your Chef de Cuisine to bat, I know you will find a way. Marketing in today’s world is harder than ever, because each and every person carries a little device around everywhere they go, giving them access to a million different messages at any given moment. Being heard through that cacophony is beyond most restaurateur’s entire marketing budget, so why give up an opportunity to be the ONLY voice in a room for 90 minutes? Because ultimately in marketing, word-of-mouth is everything.
Try a class and see how it goes—you never know, it could become a great new series that’s picked up by your local media outlets.
You won’t regret it.