If there is one thing I hate, loathe, detest with every fibre of my being, it's restaurant spruikers.
I just can't stand them. If I'm walking up and down a strip and looking for somewhere to eat, I'd like to look at the menu in peace and make my own choice.
But if a restaurant spruiker comes and and tries to get me to go inside, well... I'm sorry. For me, that's an automatic Permanent Rejection.
You should not need to try and drum up custom from passing traffic. Your restaurant should be able to get people to come in simply by being there and by having a menu on the outside, and maybe a specials board. Speaking of which, if a restaurant doesn't have a menu on the outside, well that is also a little suspect as well. Also grounds for Permanent Rejection.
Case in point, Lygon Street, Carlton. It's a very touristy spot, mainly known for it's Italian cuisine. I love Italian food and Lygon Street offers plenty of choices. But half of them will never have my custom, because they have been Permanently Rejected. (see a theme developing here?)
There are however places on Lygon Street with the good sense to trade on looks alone. If a place is packed, I think it's pretty obvious that the food must be good. And the staff aren't wasting time trying to drum up more customers simply because they don't need to, they're usually lined up waiting for a table.
One such place is Papa Gino's. We go there regularly. It's not that fancy, just simple standard Italian food, nice pizzas, nice pasta. It's really a family restaurant. It's not the sort of place you linger for hours, basically we normally eat and leave. And we like it that way.
And I've never seen the staff trying to drag people inside. They're far to busy serving the hoards.
If you're on Lygon Street and feel like Italian Fare, then there are plenty of choices. You may have to wait for Papa Gino's but the wait won't be that long, it's pleasant and quick.
And remember, Permanently Reject any and all spruikers.
It's the only way they'll learn.