Australians have had to wait a good while, but footy season is officially back and we couldn’t be more excited! For fans of Australia’s favourite ball sports, it’s an opportunity for them to see their teams return to action. For foodservice businesses, the added buzz should encourage more foot traffic, enthusiastic customers, and larger-group sittings depending on the type of venue.
Pubs and sports bars are the obvious benefactors at this time of year, but all foodservice businesses should consider what they can do to entice sports fans. As we roll into the cooler seasons, it’s wise to explore all opportunities to draw people in from the cold to enjoy a brew and a bite.
So, if your business is anywhere near a footy field, here are a few ideas to help capture the hearts of fans this season:
Quick and easy food for the win!
There are certain foods that come to mind when you’re thinking footy. It’s burgers, hotdogs, hot chips, sausage rolls (basically anything you can find at the stadium). What do they all have in common? They’re relatively easy to stuff in your mouth while your eyes are glued to a TV screen.
Fans will appreciate these classic bites especially considering the effort involved in dividing one’s attention between eating, watching, and shouting outrageous footy takes across the table. If you have large groups, a grazing platter could be a nice touch too. Load it up with meats, cheese, and all of your antipasto goodies like olives, artichoke, and sundried tomato for a sure-fire winner!
Another idea you could incorporate is having an express menu, for those fans a bit behind the 8-ball. Have 3-4 options on your menu and dedicate a speedy chef to these orders. That way if anyone is hungry but running late, they’ll know who to visit.
Have a crack at the vego market
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, over 25% of Australians are either vegan (1.6%) vegetarian (4.3%) or considered ‘meat reducers’ (19.8%). Now you could argue that the average footy fan doesn’t fit your typical ‘vego’ archetype. However, considering these figures would suggest that when seating a large group, there’s a good chance that some ‘meat reducers’ will be present.
Now, you could take the stock-standard approach and opt for the classic vego options, but we’d like to implore you to take it a little further.
As mentioned, the food that gets footy fans excited is items like burgers, hotdogs, meat pies, sausage rolls, and the list goes on. For vegos, there’s little in the way of classic footy grub for them to enjoy outside of maybe a veggie pastie.
Make it a home game
Indulging in sports is different from household to household. Some are regular season ticket holders, while others prefer the comforts of their own living room when enjoying the game. With such a rise in delivery and takeaway, it has become a lot easier for businesses to cater to people in their homes.
Capture the attention of people scrolling through their delivery apps with gameday specific specials. It could be a combo of some kind, aimed at getting orders from larger groups.
You could also create a hamper for people to buy in-store or online, with some of your best footy-centric dishes, party snacks and extras to help them support their team.
If you’re not screening the game, be the before/after party.
Not all venues have the capacity or environment to screen sport all weekend, but that shouldn’t deter you from including yourself in the festivities. A full game of footy can last north of two-hours, so many fans like to move around before and after the game to keep things spontaneous.
It could be wise to revise your ‘happy hour’ times on gameday to encourage customers to pop in before the game begins. Similarly, you may want to adjust your kitchen hours to stay open a little later to get some food into those fans that enjoyed the grog a little too much.
Riviana Foodservice hopes that the return of footy means more customers for foodservice! If you’re looking to jump on the gameday buzz with a new menu special, be sure to check out our wide variety of products today!