The North American textile services rental association, TRSA, sponsored a marketing campaign to drive business for restaurants on one of the most popular eating out occasions of the year – Mother’s Day – airing video ads to encourage booking at venues that use linen napery.

business for ‘tablecloth’ restaurants on Mother’s Day in the USA,(Sunday, 9 May), a two-week TRSA social media and remarketing campaign aimed at consumers fulfilled its mission to support these linen service customers. Web analytics showed high viewership of the campaign video and TRSA member linen, uniform and facility services operators reported increased demand from restaurants for the celebration.

“From Alsco Uniforms’ operations perspective, we saw an uptick in restaurant business, especially restaurants that use table linen,” reported Ben Fox, sales and marketing director of this Salt Lake City-based company, the nation’s largest restaurant linen service. Because Mother’s Day weekend is usually the busiest time of year for restaurants, peak demand for hygienically clean reusable textiles such as napkins and tablecloths puts linen service laundry processing and delivery into overdrive.

“Fine dining definitely had a break-through weekend. In talking with our national customers, they were booked solid throughout the day,” he observed.

Alsco personnel in locations across the United States began working with the company’s purchasing team as early as February to ensure proper inventory and encouraged customers to place orders early. Covid-19 was a factor. “We had to be very strategic as markets started reopening and having increased demand on inventory on top of the increased demand for Mother’s Day,” Fox said. “By all signs that extra communication helped us meet the inventory needs of all of our customers for the entire weekend.”

Launched 28 April and running through to Mother’s Day, the campaign was a landmark TRSA effort to reach linen, uniform and facility services customers. “This is the most engaging video we've run ads for in the industry,” said Jeff Wile, owner, Infinite Laundry, Coral Springs, FL, which has placed internet campaigns for TRSA and industry operators for a decade.

The TRSA video and campaign targeted typical fine-dining customers with remarketing ads on the Google AdWords platform. A female narrator reads the video script, saying: “This Mother’s Day, give mom the gift she really wants…the gift of sitting down for a fine dining experience with delicious food surrounded by loved ones. There is nothing quite like the ambience of the white table linen experience on Mother’s Day. Call and make your reservations today!”

The video ads were shown 39,648 times on Google’s YouTube platform and 44% (17,445) of the users who received the ad watched the 30-second video to its completion. Facebook/Instagram plays hit nearly 6,000 video views with 7,969 ad impressions.

Such high-level video engagement testifies to the quality of the video content and the custom audience used to target the ads. “Most other YouTube campaigns are in the 15% to 35% range depending on length, content, audience and other factors,” Wile added.  TRSA members’ dedication to sharing the content on their own social media channels also contributed to the campaign’s success.

Mother’s Day and the day before are the two busiest restaurant spending days of the year, according to Womply, a software and data firm that works with credit card processors to collect data for 4 million small businesses across the United States. The day before produces a restaurant industry revenue bump greater than the day itself: typically 62% more (compared with 60%), making it the biggest day of the year overall. But the 60% increase on Mother’s Day, making it the No. 2 day of the year, is “a particularly impressive feat,” Womply says, as 17% fewer restaurants are open for business that day.

Another signal of a strong Mother’s Day: linen services are swamped with restaurants’ last-minute requests for inventory or special items.“No matter how much you encourage customers to order extra, sometimes even they get surprised with last minute bookings. Our operations teams were on standby all weekend to ensure specials could be handled in a timely manner,” Fox said.