The necessity of attracting new guests into a restaurant is usually one of those things taken as a given...you just gotta do it.
That's true...you gotta do it...but sometimes it's worth thinking about both the upside and the downside of new guest attraction.
Here's the upside: Each new guest that happens to walk into your location has a real "future potential" dollar value. If you can convince them to come back multiple times into the future, then the "future potential" can be really, really huge.
And, it's pretty easy to calculate. Here's the down-and-dirty quick formula. (Your average ticket $) X (Expected number of visits per year) X (number of years you expect the guest to remain loyal) = Future Potential
Here's an example: Assume that your average ticket is $20 and you expect your guest to visit every other week, and remain a loyal customer for 5 years. The Future Potential for every new guest who walks into your restaurant is $2,600.00 ($20 X 26 X 5).
So, if you fill a four-topper with all first-timers, then the potential future sales to that table is over $10,000.00!
Every restaurateur knows the importance of attracting new guests, but it can be very clarifying to calculate for yourself just how much those new guests are worth in real dollars.