New Year New You

After the busyness of Christmas and New Year’s Eve, it can be easy to accept that January is a quiet month and rest on your laurels. However, if you want 2018 to be your best and biggest year, you should use the next few weeks to give your pub a makeover.

Could your seating be improved?

Think about the layout of your pub, especially if you’ve not adjusted the seating for many years. Would another configuration work better? Would you benefit from having a couple of poseur tables and stools by your windows? They can make your pub always seem busy, drawing people in off the street.

If your chairs are ripped, consider replacing or recovering them. Outside seating mightn’t be a priority at this time of year typically, but if you have outdoor heaters, you should make the most of this space. Smokers in particular will appreciate having comfy seating to sit on while they chat.

Are you offering the whole package?

It’s vital that you keep your punters entertained when they come back in their droves following a ditched dry January. Give them the freedom to decide what music is played with a video jukebox, install a quiz machine and have a pool table or two. Hiring the equipment you need can cost less than you think, when you turn to Manco Automatics.

Pool tables can be a welcome addition to any pub or club as they allow groups of friends and family members to compete against each other, and you could arrange regular pool competitions too. Those playing will spend longer in your establishment, so are more likely to order extra drinks and food… which will keep your tills ringing.

Do your walls need a lick of paint?

It’s amazing the difference a coat or two of paint can make, whether you decide to stick with your current shade or opt for a different colour completely. You want to make a good first impression so make sure your entrance area is looking smart. Toilets shouldn’t be overlooked either. If they look dirty and uncared for, punters will find this off-putting and they may decide to go elsewhere.

For more tips on increasing your pub’s profits in 2018, click here >


Drink Industry Trends 2018: Time To Plan Ahead

It’s a good time to plan ahead as the drink industry trends for 2018 start to take shape in the run-up to Christmas, so what will customers be looking for over the next 12 months?

The Waitrose Food & Drink Report is one of the main areas of insight, and this predicts some important regional differences, as Scotland sees an increasing focus on locally brewed beverages while Wales has a growing thirst for detailed knowledge about wine.

Different drinks categories are also blurring the boundaries, with ale casks used by Glenfiddich to add a hint of hops to their whisky, and if this continues throughout 2018, the next big trend in fusion food could actually be drinks.

Repeat custom is crucial

If you’re still looking to capitalise on festive trade, industry analysts CGA recently put out a trend report that should be on your reading list in the run-up to Christmas.

This predicted that, like in 2016, the coming holiday period will see fewer people go out to eat and drink; but those who do go out will do so more often and spend more.

Repeat custom is crucial in this climate, so make sure your premises are a fully fledged entertainment destination complete with gaming machines, pool tables and juke boxes to keep customers interested.

Premium picks

Looking long-term, CGA have also found a trend towards premium products among British consumers, so those high-priced brands should sell well in 2018.

This applies not only to spirits, but also to beers, where craft ales and other premium beverages continue to gain ground.

The end of ‘ice and a slice’?

The Morning Advertiser recently reported on another premium trend – the tendency towards more specific garnishes and mixers in gin and tonic.

As more premium brand-name gins appear behind the bar even in local boozers, customers are increasingly expecting the right garnish to go with it, whether that means juniper berries, mint, grapefruit or cucumber.

It’s a challenge for operators to keep on top of a larger number of perishable ingredients, but it’s also an opportunity to justify premium-rate pricing on an otherwise simple G&T.

Brand-name mixers like Fever-Tree tonic complete the offering, taking the trend beyond the simple question of slimline or full-fat tonic.

It’s not only G&T that’s seeing increased customisation, as champagne and prosecco cocktails are also on an inexorable rise – and for many customers a glass of fizz is now incomplete unless there’s a shot of something fruity in the bottom of the flute.


Back To School

The new school year has started, so not only are there four and five year olds embarking on new adventures, but teens starting college and university. Students today have arguably higher expectations when it comes to their college and university common rooms, so you need to make sure yours is up to scratch.

To inspire you, take a look at our top 5 recommendations:

Pool tables 

Popular not only with sporty students, pool is a great way of encouraging students to take some time out and mix with others. It can be a great way for students to de-stress, especially during exams and when they’re overloaded with coursework. Have one or two pool tables in your common room can bring a smile to the faces of mature students too, they have wide appeal. Why not hire a pool table initially? They don’t have to have a standard green cloth top either, why not opt for red, purple or a colour to match your school colours?

Juke boxes

If you want to create a space that’s fun and vibrant, having good music is key. Rather than having the radio constantly on, why not get a digital juke box, so the students can choose what they want to listen to, and when?

Magazine rack

Having a magazine rack with a range of newspapers and magazines readily available, will be a great asset to any room. Make sure you stock a range of different publications so they have wide appeal, and remove any that get tatty or damaged. Some may go walkabout, but if you put a sign up requesting students keep them in the common room, any losses should be minimal.

Comfortable seating 

A common room is a place to socialise and relax, so the seating you choose should reflect this. Your sofas should be large enough for a group of students to sit on together, and you should have other chairs and beanbags dotted around the room. It’s a good idea to have at least one table, for those wanting to eat or study.


It’s common sense, but if you want your common room to be left tidy, you need to make sure that there are plenty of bins available for the students to deposit any rubbish. During the course of the day, small bins will tend to get filled, so you’ll have to ask your cleaning staff to empty them regularly.

Manco Automatics

For more ideas on how you can entertain your students in your common rooms or SU, check out the full range of products available to hire and buy from our website >


Drinkers demand the return of the jukebox

If you’re looking at ways you can enhance your bar or pub, why not consider installing a jukebox? Journalist David Wondrich from the Daily Beast has them on his wish list for 2017, alongside korn (grain spirit), Canadian grain whisky, Cordial Médoc and Italian bar snacks.

He wrote: “I love a good jukebox more than anything else a bar has to offer. If there were a watering hole that had only swill beer, not even very cold, and butterscotch schnapps, but had a working Rock-Ola with the 45 of Ripple’s 1973 classic, “I Don’t Know What It Is But It Sure Is Funky,” I would do all my drinking there.”

Wondrich isn’t the only one wishing for a jukebox in 2017, they’ve been growing in popularity over recent years and during the last quarter, they’ve become must-haves in venues of all sizes. If you want to appeal to as wide a spectrum of punters as possible why not consider having one? You can choose to hire or to buy, the decision is yours.

Click here for information about jukebox hire in Manchester >

Not only will having a jukebox inject some fun (especially when a classic comes on and people sing along) but it can boost your takings too. It won’t be on all the time which means that it won’t irritate those looking to just enjoy a quiet drink either.

If you want to succeed in 2017, there are other ways you can stand out from your competitors:

  • Themed nights
  • An exciting food offering – whether it’s a full menu or just interesting bar snacks.
  • A craft beer weekend – it’ll take a lot of organising but could be a huge event.
  • Pool table competitions – to hire or buy pool tables, click here >
  • Battle of the bands competition – Showcase local talent on a traditionally quiet night in the week.

For more great ideas, why not contact the team at Manco Automatics? They have all the entertainment equipment you could need for your pub or club.



Top five updates your venue will need to get winter ready

The run-up to Christmas is going to be hectic so make sure you’re prepared. Your tills will be ringing and you’ll have the opportunity to increase your takings tenfold, but only if you consider what your customers want.

Here are the top 5 venue updates you’ll need this winter:

  1. A smoking shelter

Your smoking shelter should offer protection from the elements and be big enough for several people to use it at the same time. No one wants to get soaked to the skin if it starts to rain. You might want to get some de-icing salt so you can create a safe route to and from the shelter if it gets icy.

  1. A juke box

You want your venue to be buzzing, even midweek and one way to do this is by having a juke box so people can choose their favourite tunes. Hire one today.  To find out more, click here >

  1. Outdoor heaters

It’s amazing the difference outdoor heaters can make. You want to maximise your available space so let people enjoy themselves on your patio/garden area even on cold nights by having heaters. This can drastically increase your capacity and stop people from going elsewhere if your inside space seems too crowded when they first arrive.

  1. Pool tables

Having pool tables can draw in new customers, entertain your regulars and boost your income. You can hire pool tables in a wide range of different colours and set the coin validators to a price of play of your choosing. To find out more, click here >

  1. Extra fridges

If you have space, you should consider installing some extra fridges for displaying bottles or extra shelves. You don’t have to keep having to go to the cellar to restock on busy nights, you want everything close to hand.

Manco Automatics can help

Want more ways to make your venue as profitable as possible this winter? Give Manco Automatics a call on 0161 870 7777. We are the people to speak to if you want to hire jukeboxes, pool tables, quiz machines, fruit machines or pull tabs.


Manco Automatics Ltd