How A Bar Still Makes Money By Offering $25 Credit Every Time The Miami Heat Loses

Last year, when everyone in Miami was guaranteeing that the star-studded Miami Heat would run rampant over the rest of the NBA, the Whiskey Tango All American Bar & Grill in Hollywood, FL, announced it would pay out $25 credits to every customer in bar on any night the team lost. And in spite of the fact that the Heat managed to 24 regular season games, the bar managed to make enough off the deal to bring it back again for the upcoming strike-shortened season.

“I said if they didn’t win the championship, we’ll do it again,” owner John Todora told CNBC. “I didn’t think they were going to lose.”

(But they did lose. Ha ha.)

He says the promotion resulted in $97,754 in retail costs (an actual cost of around $30,000 to the bar) last year, but that was money well spent, given all the heat (pun intended) it generated for the bar.

“It’s great business for us,” Todora said. “Our marketing philosophy is that we want to be the loudest kid in the room. It’s no secret that Florida is a very fair weather state in terms of their rooting interest of their teams. When the Heat weren’t playing well, bars around us were complaining about lack of business. But we retained our customers.”

Beyond that, Todora says the average person at the bar spent around $30 on the nights when the Heat played, around 36% more than the average check on a non-game night. So the extra money from those nights helped to defray the costs of the nights when he only netted $5/check.

Of course, this model fails miserably if the team has a losing season. So don’t expect to see a similar deal being offered by bars in Cleveland, or involving the L.A. Clippers.

Miami Bar To Pay Heat Fans $25 For Every Loss–Again [CNBC.com]

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  1. comedian says:

    “And in spite of the fact that the Heat managed to 24 regular season games”

    Managed to what?

    Managed to 24?

    Oh, that’s clear.

  2. Cosmo_Kramer says:

    “So don’t expect to see a similar deal being offered by bars in Cleveland, or involving the L.A. Clippers.”

    Not a very timely joke about the Clippers.

    • Platypi {Redacted} says:

      Seriously. The Clippers could be very good this season.

    • Murph1908 says:

      I don’t even like the NBA, and knew this.

    • tutleman says:

      It’s a strange, strange feeling being able to use the words “Clippers” and “good” in the same sentence and, as a long suffering Clippers fan, it’s way overdue. Now they’ve actually got to go and, y’know, win some games.

  3. GoSpursGo says:

    “So don’t expect to see a similar deal being offered by bars in Cleveland, or involving the L.A. Clippers.”

    Well, Chris certainly isn’t the guy to ask about sports.

  4. Oranges w/ Cheese says:

    This is how most promotions work – you get more people in the door for related sales, even though you’re giving a coupon you make more money. And bars have enough of a markup that its ridiculously easy to make profit.

    More people should learn from this lesson – higher prices usually means lower profit due to fewer sales.

    • Bsamm09 says:

      “This is how most promotions work – you get more people in the door for related sales, even though you’re giving a coupon you make more money. And bars have enough of a markup that its ridiculously easy to make profit.

      More people should learn from this lesson – higher prices usually means lower profit due to fewer sales.”

      That is not the lesson at all. Actually, that is the exact opposite of the lesson.

      This is exactly the same as the Mcdonalds Monopoly game and the win a free drink under the cap on soda bottles. They are not making money on lower prices, they are increasing their sales at regular price and hoping (and succeeding) that the increased sales makes up for the times they have to give away $25.

      From the article “So the extra money from those nights helped to defray the costs of the nights when he only netted $5/check.”

      Increased volume at regular price more than makes up for the occasional loss at discounted price.

      • RandomHookup says:

        I would be even more holistic and look at the profit for the money since a promotion tonight may lead to customers on non-game nights, too. Ultimately, is my profit higher since I started the promotion? If it isn’t (or if it drops is it dropping less than my competition), then I don’t do the promotion anymore.

        I might give credit for your next visit rather than that night (with a minimum tab) if I need to generate business on other nights.

  5. FatLynn says:

    It’s also unclear if this is like a gift card, or just a credit on THAT NIGHT’S bill. If it’s the latter, than everyone is making sure to drink at least $25 during every game. Genius, really.

  6. ahecht says:

    All the whiners claiming that Groupon hurts participating businesses should read this. Despite offering $25 discounts, they still came out ahead.

    • Bsamm09 says:

      With Groupon, you pay and you are guaranteed the coupon.

      In this scenario, you are gambling on getting the coupon. Not even close to the same thing.

  7. TouchMyMonkey says:

    Miami Heat fans are big time drunks?

    • doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

      You don’t have to be drunk to be a Heat fan…but it helps!
      For the record, I am not an NBA fan at all.

  8. dogmaticman says:

    I’d bet $25 on the Clippers winning more than half their games this season. Heck I’d bet on them making it to the semi-finals at minimum. Good thing you’re not a sports writer.

    • f5alcon says:

      semifinals? making the conference finals even with their current team is not going to be easy in the west, thunder, grizz,lakers,mavs and spurs are all good enough to beat the clippers.

  9. Knyte says:

    It’s not like they are losing much money, seeing how liqueur in bars has a extremely huge markup. It’s just eating into their profits, which they are now making up by higher volume of customers.

    Take a fifth of Jack D. Costs the bar about $16 – $20.

    There are 16.907 1.5oz shots in a fifth. An average bar sells JD at anywhere from $4 – $7 a shot. (Let’s say $5 in this example.)

    Even with overpour, and only getting about 14 shots out of the bottle, is still $70 Gross off a

    • drjayphd says:

      Pretty sure bars have to buy liquor from distributors at hefty mark-ups. Still a nice margin, but not that big.

  10. parv says:

    Whiskey Tango All American Bar & Grill :: WTAABG. No, does not make for a good^Wcatchy acronym. Not to mention I was expecting “fubar” in there as in “Whiskey Tango Fubar …”.

    Let’s go for WTA A BaG (wata-a-bag). Oh well.

  11. Zer0.MediA says:

    Sports fan or not, that’s just as hilarious as it is clever.

  12. Caffinehog says:

    Actually, I bet Clevelanders would go CRAZY for a bar that gave a $25 credit every time the Heat lost. Remember the LeBron thing?