Bars, Events, Marketing

How to celebrate March Madness at your sports bar

March Madness is just around the corner, and this guide will help you design some crazy March Madness posters to capture the attention of your patrons.

March Madness, if you have not already noticed, is almost upon us. If you own a bar or run a sports pub, your habitués are most likely expecting you to have something set up for this special event of the year. 

The single-elimination tournament happening at the end of each spring features 68 colleges currently, with three weeks of buzzer-beating, thrilling, bracket-busting basketball. 

So how can you maximize the traffic and let them have a whale of a time for their March Madness this year? Keep reading for some best ways to celebrate March Madness at your sports bar. 

2017 NCAA championship game viewing party at Top of the Hill, courtesy of Top of the Hill

Create a special March Madness menu

Nothing indicates a special event at your sports bar like a whole new menu. It can make your audience excited and enhance their experience at your bar. The special March Madness menu can also be used to attract the less-sports-inclined patron towards your sports bar. 

Some quick ideas for your personalized menu:

  • Buster Beers
  • Lemon-Caper Parmesan Potato Salad Bites 
  • Jello shots in the color of the teams playing

Want to step up in your presentation even if you lack expert designing skills? Try using  March Madness poster designs on PosterMyWall to design your customized March Madness menu. We make it much easier with thousands of customizable templates that you can edit according to your choices. 

MenuPro · Menu Design Samples from MenuPro menu software - more than just restaurant  menu templates

Host watch parties for the crowd

How to cover games of this madness?

The most uncomplicated way to commemorate March Madness: make sure your audience can watch the matches at your sports bar. If your bar has a setup of televisions already, hosting watch parties should be fairly straightforward. The earlier ties are usually broadcasted across four channels. 

Thus, if you have four or more televisions in your bar, make sure to have tuned to each of the channels so you never have to miss any of those exciting games. 

Your patrons, of course, need a place where they can watch their favorite matches, and if your sports bar does not already have televisions set up, you should consider putting up a projector instead. 

You can get one for a relatively cheaper price these days. Besides, once March Madness is over, you can use it for other sporting events or movie nights in your bar. 

Making use of March Madness posters for marketing

If you are planning to host a watch party in your sports bar, you will need to get the word out. To capitalize the most out of this March Madness, it is essential to make the sports enthusiasts aware of a watch party at your bar. You can start with posting some content on your social media pages. Design some posters and flyers and pin them up around your bar, particularly a month before the event starts. You can use PosterMyWall to design your March Madness posters. This online design tool allows you to customize posters and flyers according to your preferences. 

Learn more about how to design posters with PosterMyWall here. 

In this modern age of persistent advertising, you need to establish several touchpoints to catch the audience’s attention. A sandwich board can be put out to catch the eyes of passersby. You can also add QR codes on your sandwich boards or flyers that will link up your physical marketing to the digital. 

Create promotional items and events

Promotional items and events can help you draw customers to your sports bar. You can use basketball-related advertising products to attract them. Get your name or logo printed onto items such as key chains, mini foam basketballs, or refrigerator magnets, and show them your true enthusiasm for March Madness. Such products can also be used as giveaways for events like mini-basketball shooting contests.

How to go crazy on March Madness? 

March Madness, is the time of the year when you can go crazy on your special offers. It is a great way to upsurge your sales during the month. Offer special discounts weekly or even daily on different items. 

march madness social media post discount

Start a bracket challenge 

The March Madness Bracket is the most traditional route to gather the audience for the NCAA basketball tournament. Bracket challenges while being essential constituents of the March Madness event are also a fun way to follow the matches while competing with your friends. 

For those who are not familiar with the bracket challenges, it is pretty simple. You have to choose the winner of each game, including the games between the final four and the finale. It may vary but most bracket challenges award one point for winning every first round, two points for winning every second round, and so on. You can award one big prize for the whole bracket winner or prizes for winners of each round. You can also mix in some discounts for someone who picked even a single winner correctly. 

Never watched a basketball game? No worries! The true magic of bracket challenges is that it is mostly luck. Anyone can try their luck and have a shot at winning. Let people know about the bracket challenge in your bar and enhance their March Madness experience.  

Everyone loves things for free, no?

Be a little nice to your customers and give them a little something for free. It can be aught, from a free shirt to a free drink when they get something from you during March Madness. Act creative and market this on social media; make sure everyone is aware of it and you are enticing people to come to your sports bar. You can use PosterMyWall to create your social media posts for March Madness and game-up in your promotional designs. 

“Guess the score” campaign 

Looking for something simpler that you can build yourself? Don’t worry, we got you! Try a guess the score campaign and let people predict the score for a specific game. You can have giveaways for the games played by the team of your state or city, or perhaps just for the big games.

Guess the score campaigns help you build your marketing lists as well. You can ask for the names and email addresses of the entrants before they predict the score for the game, and then use this information to promote your business in the future. 

What else can you do during this period?

Pile up the beers representing the colleges that are playing. In general, there are two ways to execute this promotion: either get beers representing different colleges and let people pick their favorite or get a beer that represents your local college. 

The other idea is to get beers that represent different colleges and offer discounts to the customers wearing their team’s jerseys. However, do not ravage your profit margins by offering extraordinary discounts on expensive beers. 

Wrapping it up

The NCAA Division I tournament is almost upon us, and if you run a sports bar, you have a great scope to increase your customer engagement. March Madness might be one of the most important events for any sports bar in the United States, but you need to be persuasive enough to get your bar full of people. 

Following the guide above, you can provide your customers a fun place to watch their favorite games and cheer on their teams, while you capitalize on the opportunity.