How to Host A Trivia Night
We have hosted trivia for almost 20 years so we will make sure you'll be ready to host your own trivia event in just a few short steps:
• Choose a day and time.
° DAY (go off-peak)
Peak hours are already bringing you business.
Keep it simple and pick a slower night for trivia.
Don’t worry, a good event will bring in customers. (We’ll give you tips for making that happen in a minute.)
° TIME (find the sweet spot)
You want to give quizzers time to arrive after work while ending the quiz at a reasonable hour, especially on a weeknight.
At the events we host, we’ve found 7:30pm - 8pm are the most consistently attended times.
You know your customers best, though, so pick a time that works for them.
• Choose a format (keep it simple)
Pub quizzes have been entertaining bar-goers in England and Ireland for decades.
We like to follow the traditional pub quiz format and simply ask questions, give answers and give people something to look at in between.
Five rounds of ten questions, with a picture round for folks to work on throughout the game, has proven time and time again to be the perfect amount of trivia to get to the ideal 2 - 2.5 hour time range.
• Choose questions (get your facts straight)
As experienced quizmasters, we've seen plenty of objections to answers. People don’t like to be wrong.
The problem arises when their objections are correct.
That's why we do multiple rounds of fact-checking each week, including testing out at our own events, using multiple sources to keep our questions and answers accurate.
We also structure the questions to be objective and to have only one or two solid, concrete answers. Try a free sample quiz or shop our trivia here.
• Choose a host (don’t overthink it)
Choose a regular customer or bartender (or you!) Someone who your customers already know will make a GREAT host.
Because our format is so simple, anyone who feels comfortable enough reading questions to a crowd can be a pub quiz host.
Banter and humor always help but just about anyone can host a successful pub quiz thanks to our easy-to-use format and our fact-checked questions.
• Set up a location in your bar (you won’t need much space)
A chair, a table and a microphone are pretty much all you need to run one of our quizzes.
Carve out a little spot somewhere that quizzers can easily walk to and where a microphone can be hooked up to your speaker system or a free-standing speaker.
Have a tiny bar? If you can spare a stool, a bar spot would work in a pinch. (Just get a wireless microphone or one of those Britney Spears head mics.)
• Choose a prize (people LOVE winning something!)
Some bars like to charge a small entrance fee (five or ten bucks) and pay out the pot to the winning team.
A round of drinks or bar tab prize is also very popular.
Bar merchandise, if you have it, is another good way to easily make quizzers happy.
Don’t worry how valuable the prize is — most people play for bragging rights, not to pay the bills.
• Promote (...and know your target audience)
There are two groups to concentrate on: the "already-customers" that AREN'T “already-quizzers" and the "already-quizzers” that aren’t “already-customers."
A few weeks before your first quiz, let your customers know you’re starting a pub quiz and fill them in on the day and time and how the quiz works.
Provide this info through posters, word of mouth and of course social media. (We have tons of examples of how we’ve done this over the years so if you have any questions, just ask.)
• Quiz! (...consistency is key)
Now that you’ve got everything you need for a successful trivia night, keep a steady schedule so quizzers keep coming back.
Keep it on the same night each week and give it a few weeks to see how well your marketing is paying off.
Eventually you'll see your bar brimming with patrons on an otherwise quiet night and the true payoff comes on the weekends when you start seeing new faces from trivia night.
We have hosted our trivia nights for almost 20 years so you can trust us when we say that following these tips will make your quiz nights a success. Check out our trivia shop now to get started!