Taryn Sirkka, Digital Marketing Manager at Ormeggio – Sydney Australia:
First Table is a great way to attract new customers that have never heard of our restaurant before, and fill up our early seating times that would normally be empty.
It allows us to reseat a second booking after the First Table customers have finished, and also creates a buzzing atmosphere at a time of the service that would usually be silent!
Alex Tuckett, Restaurant Manager at Pilu at Freshwater Sydney Australia:
First Table has allowed us to reach a wider audience, enabling diners that may not have thought to dine with us previously the chance to experience Pilu at Freshwater at a lesser cost.
Our hope is that diners will enjoy a great experience and return to celebrate future special occasions. The majority of diners involved with First Table reside in our local community, which has allowed strong word of mouth promotion.
Ernst Doppler, owner of Das Elderweiss in Sydney, Australia:
I really do like the concept of First Table and it works perfectly for me.
With over seventy percent of the diners never having been to my restaurant before, it’s a great way to expose my restaurant and get locals in the doors in the early hours of dinner service.
Through the First Table deal, diners feel more relaxed to explore the menu and try dishes they normally wouldn’t eat.
Fallon Gomesz, Manager at Platinum Group in New South Wales & Queensland, Australia:
First Table has opened up the opportunity for Platinum Restaurant Group venues, across NSW & QLD, to access a new clientele and many first time diners. In such a competitive industry, it’s always great to capture first time diners and wow them so they can become regulars.
The beauty of First Table is you have complete control over what time and what days guests dine. We found it a great way to increase off - peaks times, encouraging other diners to come in.
The ease of setting this up makes its even better and Mandy is more than helpful to answer any questions you have. Love this new avenue for us to get in contact with diners.
Tony Robertson, owner of Char Bar & Grill in Nelson, New Zealand (and former owner of Hamills in Queenstown):
Being an old school restaurateur I was always taught that people attract people. But how did you do that?
In the old days you would use mannequins, blow up dolls or blown up photos of customers that were pasted to the front windows to make it look as though there was a crowd…
And then along came First Table...to be able to have live people seated in the front windows from 5.30...attracting other customers...magic
Well done First Table for coming up with a great idea that’s flexible and very easy to customise.
Deahla Stockman, Restaurant Manager at The Commons Auckland, New Zealand:
First Table has helped to open our doors to customers that might not have thought there was classic European food available in the North Shore.
Through the deals provided by First Table, guests feel more relaxed to explore our menu and try dishes they wouldn’t normally eat. From this, we have seen an influx in repeat diners who want to bring their friends and family in to discover the same quality experience they had at The Commons.
Sally McChesney, owner/director Taste and Savour Cafe Wine & Food Store Queenstown, New Zealand:
I am writing to say how well I think First Table is working for me. I was initially sceptical about how it would work and how much I would be giving away, but have come to the conclusion that with 50% off just the food, it is not really costing me anything and achieves a number of positive benefits.
We get regular new customers who have not been to us before, and so I presume that as well, there are a whole number of people who actually have seen our presence on-line even though they chose not to come and they go somewhere else at that time. Then at least if they see our brand in another context, they can think - “oh yes, I saw them on First Table, and they had good reviews” and perhaps give us a go another time. It’s all about getting our profile out there.
I was worried that we would get the same people coming back and using the discount all the time, and although we do have the odd customer who does this, (and well done them!) I find that it still provides a benefit to us in that we chose the times available when we are otherwise quiet. It is good to see a table filled that might not otherwise be, and allows other customers to see nice plates of food going out so they can think “ oh, that looks good“. It is all about creating a buzz in the cafe - a busy cafe is so much more appealing than an empty one.
We can choose the days and times available and change them at any time to suit ourselves, so there is no pressure. And I have to say First Table are a pleasure to deal with, they are so helpful and nothing is a problem. Jess in the office is delightful. I thought perhaps I would just use it short-term, but now I can’t see any reason not to continue long term. I think it is good for business.
Hayden Davison, Restaurant Manager at Jervois Steak House, Queenstown, New Zealand:
First Table has definitely been a great marketing tool for us. It’s a brilliant way for our local market to try us for a nice dinner out without breaking the bank.
Early dining is always a quiet time of night so it’s great being able to create some real atmosphere in the restaurant at an early stage of the evening. It’s also a great opportunity for our staff to show the First Table diners what we do here and add a personal touch to their experience. We get a lot of return customers as a result.
Rachel Rose, owner of Sasso, Queenstown, New Zealand:
What we like about First Table is that you have control over what time and what days guests dine. We have found it a great way to bring life into the courtyard in the late afternoon, encouraging other diners to come in.
Although it is always difficult to gauge the effect on bottom line I believe that First Table has increased Sasso’s profile with local clientele, something that we have found challenging in a crowded and heavily discounted market. Radio advertising had very little effect, but through your channel we can actually see the local diners who have visited via the review process.
Leigh Stock, General Manager at McGavins Restaurant, Mercure Dunedin Leisure Lodge, New Zealand:
I must admit I was sceptical at first about this opportunity, however after talking with the First Table team it became apparent how much of a difference they could make to our dining numbers. People attract people and by ensuring you have guests in your restaurant early it’s amazing the incremental business you can make from walk-in guests who see other guests enjoying themselves
Kathryn Curtis, owner of Shop 3 Bistro, Bristol, UK:
We have been using First Table since its Bristol launch and are really happy with the new dynamic it provides. We are finding new guests who are interested in trying us for the first time and then return independently.
We find that mostly the discount allows guests to treat themselves to nice drinks and have a great experience which they want to tell their friends about. The First Table team are really friendly and always fast to respond.