There used to be a time when you could just open your nightclub doors and expect to see a queue going round the block.
Not any more.
It’s no longer enough to rely on the pull of a particular DJ or celebrity appearance to get the crowds in. Now it’s all about membership.
You don’t have to be exclusive to give exclusive benefits
The most exclusive clubs in Mayfair have always operated a ‘members only’ policy, and they’ve expected their members to pay handsomely for the privilege. For those clubs where demand is unlimited, paid-for membership cards are a way of keeping their club exclusive.
But that’s not the case for most clubs around the UK, where competition from bars and other clubs is fierce. Rather than reduce prices and risk damaging their brand or reputation, many are implementing membership cards programmes.
These allow their customers to feel like exclusive members, without them having to stump up for it.
What membership cards can do to attract business
Producing membership cards doesn’t cost much. But they give a lot of value to the card holder.
First there’s the feeling of belonging to an exclusive club, a benefit that really can’t be underestimated.
As part of their membership, you can offer benefits that don’t really cost the club anything, but have a high perceived value, for example:
– Invites to free parties
– Free entry for the member and friends on their birthday (you’ll make up any ‘lost’ revenue at the bar)
– Fast-track entry on specific nights
– The opportunity to ‘reserve tickets first’ for key events
– Members-only newsletter with special offers and discounts.
For key members, you could make them feel extra special by providing them with VIP cards for example, that give them access to certain areas of the club. Or how about Queue Jump cards: always impressive when brought out of the wallet on a busy Saturday night.
Look after your guests when they’re there
It’s the simple things that make people feel special. Welcoming a guest by name when they show a VIP card or Queue jump card is easy to do, and makes a great impression. If they’ve booked a table, get someone to take them there and introduce them to a waitress.
Thought about offering a taxi service to your VIPs? One of the main things to spoil a good night out is trouble getting home at the end of it.
The other is lost belongings. Giving out branded, numbered plastic cloakroom tags reduces the likelihood of a scramble or lost/missing coats when it comes to leaving time.
There’s a lot of value to be gained from giving out membership cards: benefits that far outweigh the initial investment of having them printed.