If you are looking for creative ways to attract customers to your bar on slow nights, trivia can be a great option, but it might not be the right choice for every bar. You need to consider any potential limitations of your space, your goals for implementing a themed night and the wants of your clientele when considering whether trivia night is a viable option. As a bar owner or manager, you don't want to end up alienating your regulars or running a sub-par trivia night that ends up being a flop, so before you take the plunge, here are some factors to consider that will help set you up for success.
1. Can your space accommodate small groups and an announcer?
Your bar will have to be set up in a way that teams will be able to comfortably gather around tables and discuss answers without being right on top of opposing teams. It is also important that participants are able to hear the announcer. Larger spaces may be perfect for groups, but also create a cavernous effect that swallows up sounds and makes it difficult to clearly project the questions. Keep in mind that you can always rearrange furniture or shut off certain areas with curtains to improve sound quality.
2. Do you have the necessary equipment and staff to run a trivia night?
If you haven't been to a trivia night yourself lately, it can be easy to underestimate how much work goes into setting up for trivia and scoring teams throughout the evening. You will need at least one person to read questions and entertain the audience and another staff member to quickly tally points. It is also important to have a good sound system and any other audio/visual equipment. A lot of trivia nights incorporate pop culture questions that require playing movie or music clips, so you will want to be prepared.
3. Do you want to outsource your trivia night?
You can either make up your own questions and enlist your staff to run trivia night, or you can outsource the job to a professional organization, like Geeks Who Drink. These types of companies will partner with your venue and provide a quizmaster who comes prepared to entertain the crowd and read prepared questions that cover a wide range of topics. This provides a simple and easy way to get your trivia night off the ground without having to put in a ton of legwork.
4. Are you looking to connect with a new market niche?
You may have a group of regulars, but you want to expand your audience and bring new people into the bar. Trivia night can be a great solution. One effective way to connect with a certain audience is to choose a themed event. Depending on whether you set-up a sports, beer, music or movie themed trivia night, you will attract a different crowd. Craft your trivia night to attract the market segment that you want patronizing your bar.
5. Are you willing to offer prizes?
Playing is fun, but winning prizes, like a $50 bar tab, makes it worth coming back. If you don't want to offer freebies to the winning teams, your trivia night will probably fizzle out pretty quickly.
Trivia night can work at practically any bar as long as you have the right equipment, an entertaining host, challenging questions and prizes. With a few adjustments, you can make your space trivia friendly and the thrill of competition will keep teams coming back each week. Choose the right night and give it a try.