Remembering the Critical Success Factors, maintaining authenticity is about frequently re-examining what you’re doing to ensure that it complies with the original reason you opened the pub. It’s also about maintaining a clear identity among your competitors and providing a compelling reason for consumers to choose you as their venue for entertainment. So, it’s always good to reflect on the touch points that set you apart and confirm you as authentic in the consumer’s mind. A mental checklist for maintaining authenticity might look like the following:
- Does my menu contain mainly genuine Irish dishes made from traditional recipes or does it contain mainly North American dishes with Irish names?
- Is the music being played Irish-style or have we allowed it to drift to play any kind of music?
- Do I regularly coach my employees on why we’re an Irish Pub and how to deliver Irish-style warmth and hospitality or do I just leave it up to them?
- Do I promote my premium Irish beers or do I advertise specials on my domestic beers?
- Do I try to create linkages to Ireland through my promotions or do I just keep it local?
- Do I try to engage with local Irish-related societies and communities or do I ignore them?
- Is my only Irish-focused celebration during the year St. Patrick’s Day or do I create other Irish-related celebrations at other times?
- Do I allow my marketing and promotional material to reflect the premium offering that I make to my consumers or is that material predominantly green and filled with references to leprechauns and shamrocks?
- Do I go to Ireland every couple of years to refresh my knowledge or do I just rely on that one visit seven years ago?
Your original decision to open an Irish Pub rather than a Sports Bar was a strong decision. Over time, it’s easy to forget the reason you did it, but that’s the reason you should keep consistent with your original idea. The ethos of the Irish Pub is to become a distinct but integral part of the community, something that consumers adopt early and adore forever.