Promos can drive traffic and raise funds for a cause.

Clever cocktail names and shameless pampering drove crowds to San Francisco’s Rambler bar inside the Hotel Zeppelin in November. While customers were drawn in by mustache-inspired cocktails and spa services for facial hair enthusiasts, the promotions were for a cause.

Rambler celebrated the global Movember charity movement in November—a nexus of philanthropy and style that raises awareness for men’s health issues like prostate and testicular cancers while celebrating hip facial hair. The bar offered a 10 percent discount to mustachioed customers who ordered off the “Mustache-ology” menu. The menu included three classic cocktails with masculine twists—the Manmosa, the Mustachelada, and the Mustache Ride.

“These promotions are a wonderful opportunity to involve the community and guests of the hotel alike, especially by encouraging participants to spread the word through social media,” says Simone Aguilar. “It’s a chance for us to support an important cause and a convenient way for people to participate.”

In addition to month-long cocktail specials, Rambler hosted a self-care pop-up, bringing in a dedicated barber and offering an exclusive whiskey tasting. It was “the ultimate opportunity to relax and indulge.”

When thinking up the promo, Aguilar, Rambler director of sales and events, saw the opportunity to use the bar as a platform to reach an audience.

“With so many resources available and reaching a diverse audience from locals to visitors alike, restaurants are able to play an instrumental role in making a difference in the community,” Aguilar says. “Whether raising funds for a particular cause or donating food and supplies during times of crises, the restaurant industry has a responsibility to aid its community and offer a source of comfort and reassurance.”

Movember wasn’t the Rambler’s first philanthropic rodeo, so to speak. The bar and hotel has hosted fundraising promotions previously, to the tune of thousands of dollars raised for those in need. In October 2017, the bar and hotel hosted an event called Fighting the Fires to raise money for those affected by the North Bay Fires.

“All of the proceeds from the food and beverage sales as well as raffle tickets and the silent auction went to the Mark West Community Preschool,” Aguilar says. “Rambler also served as an in-kind donation drop-off center and worked with a variety of companies that assisted with distributing the items. With both sales and donations, Rambler raised about $10,000 at this event.”

Bar Management, Feature