On Monday morning you might have found yourself sitting in a café, sipping on an over-priced latte, wondering why the business even bothered to open if it needed to charge an exorbitant public holiday surcharge to cover its costs.
 
Good question.
 
The simple fact is, for some businesses it doesn’t make sense to open on a public holiday, and there’s no shame in that.
 
For other businesses though, public holidays or national events can be an opportunity to jump on the bandwagon and make some extra cash.
 
On Sunday's Let’s Talk Business program on the Macquarie Radio Network I shared my tips for doing business on a public holiday:
 
Guru tip 1 - Use national days to run sales and specials. You’ve missed the boat for Australia Day, but Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. Start thinking now about how you can leverage the day to bring more business through the door. Florists make between 2500-7000% margin on the day, why shouldn’t your business cash in as well?
 
Guru tip 2 – If you run a service business, the simple fact is you need to charge a premium for public holiday call-outs. By the time Australia Day rolls around many small business owners are exhausted from having worked all summer, while everyone else took a holiday. The Australia Day public holiday is a chance to spend some family time before the kids go back to school, so it’s ok for a tradie to take an emergency call-out, but make sure you charge a premium for it.
 
Guru tip 3 – Social media is a good way to communicate with prospective customers. Whether you decide to open or shut, or if you’re running a holiday-related promotion, make sure you communicate it with your customers. For many people, when they’re checking to see whether your business is open, their first port of call is Facebook or Instagram. If you haven’t told them you’re open, they’ll go to a similar business that has posted about it.
 
Guru tip 4 – With the kids going back to school this week, this can be a good time to talk to them about money. You might be spending the day labelling uniform items or covering text books with contact. Take the opportunity to talk to the kids about the cost of all these items before you lose them to homework for the rest of the year.