Lessing’s Hospitality Group is a sixth-generation family-owned and family-operated food service
and hospitality business. The company was founded in 1890 by Maxwell Lessing and to this day
is operated by 15 family members. This highly diversified company feeds more than 40,000
guests per day at over 100 corporate, educational, country club and manufacturing plant
locations throughout the Northeast. Lessing’s also operates 17 high-end wedding and catering
venues, nine full-service restaurants, a historic hotel, and has entered into a franchise
agreement with Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza to develop the chain of fast-casual restaurants in the
Within the restaurants division of the company are two branches, the fine dining restaurant
brands and Main Street Restaurants brand. The Main Street Restaurants (MSR) are a group of
similar concepts that provide diners with a casual atmosphere, classic and approachable fare,
and a topnotch bar program.
The Lessing’s Rewards program applies only to Main Street Restaurants. When a fan joins the
program, they receive a “rewards card” that they must present at each MSR visit. In exchange,
fans are awarded points toward future savings at any MSR location. One point is earned for
every dollar spent on food and drinks. For every 400 points earned, fans receive a $20 gift
The Lessing’s Rewards program is an important tool that the group utilizes when connecting
with previous customers, making the connection with new customers, and staying top-of-mind
in a competitive environment. Through years of experience, Lessing’s has learned that rewards
activity is most animated when an ongoing incentive is offered. The group has also learned that
rewards activity traditional slumps during the holiday season.
In celebration of the 2017 holiday season, Lessing’s chose to develop a campaign surrounding
the “12 Days of Christmas.” Rewards members were offered 12 different deals to be used in
any MSR, one per visit. Each involved either a discount percentage of the entire check or a
complimentary menu item such as a free dessert or appetizer.
Creating campaign awareness was done so via social media and email marketing, as well as
public relations. Social media announcements of the overall campaign, as well as specific deals,
were shared on Facebook and Instagram. Each post included an enticing image and was
“boosted” to reach a larger surrounding target audience. Through email marketing, Lessing’s
was able to take advantage of another avenue to connect with diners. With public relations, an
additional influence was created with a third-party endorsement.
The 12 Days of Christmas was one of the most successful Lessing’s campaigns to date. Rewards
registrations increased by 144% over previous months, there was a 31% increase in active
rewards members, a 44% increase in total rewards customer visits, and there was a 30%
increase in total rewards program contribution.