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A deep dive on murder mystery bar crawls

A Unique Way to Stack Cash

It’s Saturday afternoon. I’m grabbing drinks with my best friends. One drink turns into two, setting the stage for some unexpected fun.

As we’re leaving the bar, our attention is caught by a peculiar sight - a group huddled around a lifeless figure.

My curiosity was piqued - I had to investigate and learn more about what was going on.

Little did I know, this decision would lead me to a goldmine, perfect for replication in bustling cities everywhere.

It’s so good, that I’d be all over it if it wasn’t for my deep-seated love affair with lounging on the sofa… and writing newsletters. 

Here’s a quick teaser:

  • It’s sweaty… you’ll need a little elbow grease. 

  • No tech skills required 

  • Low upfront investment

Feeling intrigued? Let’s dive in… But first, a quick shout-out to our sponsor!

Bay Area Times

Murder Mystery Bar Crawls 

Imagine if a whodunit, an escape room, and a pub crawl had a baby. Here’s how it works:

  1. At the first bar, you’re given a brief. You and your team (the friends you come with) are detectives put on a cold case. Your mission is to crack the case and solve the murder. 

  2. You receive a manilla folder filled with about 20 pages of documents - all with an array of different info related to the case.

  3. At each bar, you unlock new clues used to solve the case.

Pretty simple, right? That’s exactly what makes this an incredible business opportunity.

Let’s break down the numbers:

For $45, you get to join the crawl. I must admit it was really fun and well worth the money.

I made a point to count how many people we were on the crawl and my best guess was 150. 

Given the simplicity of everything, the costs seemed to be incredibly low. They had 1 person checking people in for the first hour + the cost of the paper products each person was given.

Here’s some napkin math:


  • Ticket Price = $45

  • Number of attendees = 150

  • Total Revenue = $6750


  • Materials ($2/person) = $300

  • Labor (2hrs @ $20) = $40

  • Total Costs $340

Profit per event = $6410

Note: This model doesn’t account for marketing costs

Let’s assume you can host at a minimum, one of these every 2 months (6/year). 

That puts us at roughly $40,000/year in potential profit. Life-changing money? No. But certainly not bad.

But who says you have to stop at one city? 

The model's simplicity makes it incredibly easy to replicate this in EVERY MAJOR CITY. 

There’s a path to making this a $1M/year business. 

How to Execute:

Let’s start with customers. Here’s how I’d get your first 100 attendees:

  1. Hang Flyers: Oldschool - I know, but it’ll work. Target bar-heavy neighborhoods.

  2. Partner with Local Bars: In exchange for being a stop on the pub crawl, require a bar to promote the event on social media.

  3. Partner with Local Influencers: Every city has micro-influencers. Offer free tickets in exchange for promotion

  4. Partner with Local Event Organizers: Collaborate with other event organizers to cross-promote each other’s events

  5. Partner with Local Corporations: Offer this as a team-building exercise to their employees. Give them discounted tickets, or include their logo on your materials.

Now let’s talk about the game itself. You’re not a game master - and you don’t have any interest in building a murder mystery from scratch. I get it.

Luckily, you can easily adapt most murder mystery games to a bar crawl setting. Here are a few places to draw inspiration from:

Last thing. This business has social media written all over it. Make it easy for your customers to become your promoters. Add cool backdrops for group photos and give away drinks in exchange for social media promotion.

In summary, here’s why you should pursue this: 

  • Low startup costs ~$500 and you’re in business

  • A quick path to revenue

  • No tech skills are needed. Just a bit of hustle

That’s all for this week - now get out there and build it!

— Keevin ✌️