Patrick van Aller: "Continually refreshing the marketing ideas made a big difference" | Formitable
Thought For Food ← Back
4 minute read
29 May, 2020

Patrick van Aller: "Continually refreshing the marketing ideas made a big difference"

After begin closed for weeks, Van Kinsbergen can finally open their doors again, but on their own terms. Patrick van Kinsbergen (l) together with co-owner Bas Kokshoorn

After being closed for weeks, restaurants can finally open their doors again. Patrick van Aller (co-owner Gastropub Van Kinsbergen in The Hague) is very happy, but was still vocal during the weeks they were closed. "We stayed in touch with our guests and are ready to open our doors from June 1st, but on our own terms."

After being closed for weeks, restaurants can finally open their doors again. Patrick van Aller (co-owner Gastropub Van Kinsbergen in The Hague) is very happy, but was still vocal during the weeks they were closed. "We stayed in touch with our guests and are ready to open our doors from June 1st, but on our own terms."

Closing time

Patrick van Aller immediately reached out to customers on the day he had to close. “I made a video asking people to buy a gift voucher. First I sent it out to friends and after that I posted it on Instagram. The gift vouchers sold extremely well, I think because the video was honest and sincere. It showed guests how hard the closure affected the hospitality industry. We received a lot of hearthwarming reactions and immediately we realized: we have to do something to make the best of this situation.”

Keep in touch with your guests

From day one, Van Aller started working with his team. ‘We met every day to make plans. For example, we started vlogging through our social channels, this immediately gained traction. We were just being ourselves in these videos and that worked. For example, we still had 10 chickens left, but after posting a video showing this we sold those chickens in no time. By staying busy and telling our story, we had a constant stream of marketing and were able to keep in touch with our guests. Everywhere I drove in The Hague people waved at me and wished us success. This was great to see.”

Continue being innovative

By remaining creative, they kept the spirit alive at Van Kinsbergen. "Continually refreshing the marketing ideas has helped us a lot. It started with the gift vouchers, later we sold pub-to-house packages, an Easter breakfast and on King's Day we sold chips. We also made videos of this and for our delivery service we distributed flyers throughout The Hague. Trying new things keeps it fun for both your guests and yourself. It's not just about what you sell, the idea and the road to that sale also play a very important role. "

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Finally open again

When it became clear that the catering industry could open again from the 1st of June, we had to think strategy first. “After the first reports surfaced that we were allowed to open again, I waited a while before allowing reservations. When the rules became clearer, I enabled reservations and immediately sent out a newsletter. Guests are eager to go out again, but you have to communicate the rules clearly to remain in control of your own business. In our booking confirmation and reminder we clearly indicate how we will work from the 1st of June and what we expect from our guests. Good communication is key. It may be a bit strict, but otherwise guests will make their own rules.” Van Aller starts laughing: “I also asked our guests if they wouldn’t mind waiting a little while to redeem their gift vouchers.”

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