Nightclub launches campaign to snare brand loyalists from day one

With its new social media campaign coming to fruition this week, Tao Nightclub is trying to snare brand loyalists from day one.

The club’s new marketing program is aimed at 20-year-olds who plan to celebrate their 21st birthdays in Las Vegas. Tao is targeting local feeder markets such as San Diego; Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Denver, as well as nearby college campuses, all through social media.

“We already see a large influx of students come during March Madness and spring break,” said Kristin Conte, director of marketing for Tao Asian Bistro, Nightclub and Beach and Lavo Italian Restaurant and Nightclub.

Tao is targeting Canada, too, which has become more of a feeder market in recent years.

This year Tao Nightclub ranked No. 3 on Nightclub & Bar’s Top 100 list, with 2012 total revenue between $60 million and $70 million.

“Profitability is the key to success for a nightclub owner or operator, and promotions are an important element in maintaining revenue. Venues live by the promotions that they create due to the competitive environment,” said Kristen Santoro, content and conference director for Nightclub & Bar Media Group.

She added that Las Vegas is known for having an overwhelming number of nightlife options, and a successful promotion can be the deciding factor of what attracts an unfamiliar visitor to a given venue.

Tao’s newest marketing program was created two months ago with the goal of snagging next-generation customers for the club, which opened in 2005.

“Everyone, when you turn 21, where do you want to go? You want to go to Vegas,” Conte said. “Hopefully, we’re creating brand loyalists.”

The club plans to hook new customers like this: Those who soon will be of age write in to Tao’s website and tell the club their birthday and when they’re coming to Vegas. Tao then will create a birthday party evite for the guest of honor to post on social media sites. On the big night, admission and the first round of shots are comped for a small group. Tao also will send out a tweet near the event to wish a happy birthday to whomever is celebrating. Birthday babies also receive an “I turned 21 @Taolasvegas” T-shirt. All free of charge.

“All brands are looking for ways to engage their customer base. ... For us this just seems to make sense,” Conte said.

If they want a little bit more of an experience, customers can purchase a VIP table through a buy-two-get-one bottle offer.

With the VIP experience, guests also receive a shout-out from the DJ and the guest of honor’s name will flash across the club’s LED board.

“Revelers are looking for an over-the-top experience, which Tao is providing in this package promotion,” Santoro said. “By creating a 21st Birthday Club, it gives Tao an opportunity to impress these guests, early on in their nightlife experience, therefore potentially gaining loyal customers.”

The first requests will be fulfilled starting in June. Conte said the club has received about 100 reservations thus far, spanning the rest of 2013. All of the advertising has been done via social media.

“Certainly this generation, that’s the best way to reach them, is online,” Conte said.

Eventually, Tao will purchase banner ads on key websites after the initial program is rolled out. With more than 100,000 fans on Facebook, online marketing is a big focus for the nightlife venue, Conte said.

Contact reporter Laura Carroll at or 702-380-4588. Follow @lscvegas on Twitter.