How can I negotiate a bulk discount on gift cards for employees?
How should I buy 17 gift cards for my employees to use at a nice restaurant? All the restaurants are located in Waikiki in large hotels. I have budgeted $50 per card. Is it unreasonable to ask the restaurant to give me "more" on the card? Originally, I was hoping for $100, but I see that the restaurants are not willing to give me that kind of discount. I am now asking for $75 to $80 per card. Any suggestions as to how to approach the restaurants. Also, who should I approach - restaurant manager, F&B Manager, hotel manager, sales & marketing, etc...
I would start by talking with a food services manager and a director of marketing at each location, then see if either send you to the restaurant manager. They are different conversations because all positions have different goals and targets. Think about what they individually might need/want. See if how connected the restaurant is to the hotel via management. Some might be very separate entities which might affect the direction of your negotiations.
Prioritize those you are going to contact with your most important or valuable prospects last - you don't want to mess them up those accidentally at the beginning and you may learn valuable info to use on the most important targets while talking with the least important ones.
Stage 1 is seeing if they are interested in a straight trade first. If you have something you can offer as a potential 'trade' for the gift cards, I would start there before even talking about your money for their cards. Maybe there's a service you can offer at their location or you can pick up guests and shuttle/limo them to your location?
Maybe you can reinforce or promote something for the restaurant or hotel at your Center. Maybe there's something you can add on to one or more of your services that involves the restaurant/hotel or their interests - like a bonus of some sort. You would have to research what that might be but remember their priority at the restaurant/hotel is what's in it for them - not what you need or want.
Their gift card might have a face value of $100, but a hard (real) cost of $50 or less. Don't be afraid to talk about the hard costs of food services at their restaurant because that's what it really boils down to. I would research the food markup percentages among the hotel restaurants to get an idea of what their real costs are before negotiating. After all, your money is real dollar value, their food is marked up and not actual cost.
From there you might go to Stage 2 and negotiate a discount for some cards. You might need to buy more cards than you need right now, but you can use the extras later. Start with needing 10-15 cards. After you exhaust all options and get all the info for up to 15 cards, ask what the deal would be if you got 20 or 25 cards.
Can you emphasize something your staff can say or do during or after delivery of your services that frame the hotel or restaurant favorably? Is there anything from the hotel/restaurant they would like you to share with your clients as an endorsement? Maybe something from you that once combined with something from the hotel becomes an extremely appealing offer?
These are just ideas off the top of my head, but maybe something will spark an idea of your own. You might even be able to partner with other businesses you already have relationships with that would also benefit the hotel you want to work with - and benefit them, too.
Always look for opportunities to leverage your resources that money can't buy or that take too long for others to develop.
The mindset you are approaching them from is that you have a clientele that is at least equal to their target market. You might even wrangle gift cards you can share with your own clients or employees - especially if you are pushing business to the restaurant exclusively.
This can be something where last year you partnered with one restaurant and this year you are looking to send your clientele to a different location as a change. It's business the chosen restaurant would not likely be getting this year because you'd normally be sending it elsewhere.
You see how this expands beyond what you originally wanted? It could be more work than you originally wanted, but there's a lot more potential in it, too. You could end up being a preferred vendor for the hotel which might make your final choice of hotel even more important.
I would approach the restaurant manager and ask about bulk discount. That is a larger sale and I would think that some discount would make sense for them. That said, I would also approach sales and marketing. As a wellness center, could you promote their restaurant in your center or center's materials to send them more business and also help their brand as a supporter of healthy living? If this is attractive to them, it would be easier for them to give your employees a discounted package. It is also easier for your staff to promote that restaurant if they have eaten there and have been treated well.
Many businesses are able to negotiate a deal in where you highlight their services, support and more. Reach a couple of the restaurants, and tell them what you have in mind. Invite them to become your "xxxxx sponsor"
... whatever nice idea you come up with for a title. Some of those businesses use to have slow days at certain times in the weeks or months. In where you can offer to promote those days in exchange for support.. things like that.
You have to approach the decision maker in the business. Don 't wast your time with assistants, waitress, etc, they can put you in contact with the appropriate person though.
If you want to go a little further and really help them too, schedule a meeting, bring ideas to the table. And listen to one of their main concerns pertaining to the impacts they have or want to create in the community. Who knows you can be of immense support? :)
This has a lot to do with cross marketing and mutual collaborations. And if you come up with a nice plan, it can be a strategic happy alliance.
Many restaurants owners and manager need sales, and peope coming in to their places more frequently, and most of those owners are unaware of what to do. Approach them openly, inviting and prepared. Let room for great discussions. Touch bases, let them think and follow up.
Success to you.
Hi, The Wellness Center Hawaii! Hope that all is well for you. This is an area I quite good in because we deal in these things with my company. We actually show business owners, professionals and entrepreneurs how to add value to their employees. I help a business with the issue that you are faced with it. I told him about our program that is a part of our business model. We show business to help add value to their employee's by helping them save on their everyday shopping needs. It is free to join as a Free Preferred Customer at not cost and they are able to apply for one of our customer credit cards and then plus on top of that we help employee's how to save on their spending by helping them Convert Spending, Into Earning that helps them build a shopping annuity that pays them passively over and over again. If you would like to learn more of what I am referring to, I will enclose my information for you to contact me. You should help your employee's resolve a problem that they face every single day on pay day. They have more month than they do money. How about helping them save on their everyday spending needs?
That is an informative article.
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