Food Service Promos Blog
One of the keys to boosting sales is to find ways to set yourself apart from your competitors. This brief article offers a few things to consider as you look to grab market share away from your competition this year.
Separate yourself from your competition. To increase foot traffic, you need to create loyal customers who will stop by your store specifically, rather than the store one mile down the road. It could be incredible coffee (find a regional coffee roaster), exemplary customer service or fantastic pastries from a local bakery. Brainstorm ways to set your store apart from all the others with similar floor plans that are selling the same products.
Constantly seek to get better and more innovative. What special or regional products or services can you offer to entice customers to shop at your establishment? For example, you could offer video game rentals, offer that fantastic frozen pizza that you can normally only get on the other side of the state. Seek input from your employees...they hear from customers every day and will likely have some great ideas to share.
It's no secret that Foodservice is where the largest ROI is --- and this is not going to change any time soon. If you have not been focusing your energy on your foodservice strategy, a good place to start is on building a successful breakfast program.
Here are a few tips that will help give your breakfast program a boost:
Start with your Coffee
"Breakfast is the only daypart where beverage choice drives a lot of the purchase decision on where to get the food," said Dennis Lombardi, executive vice president of foodservice strategies for retail and foodservice consultancy WD Partners, which counts Wawa and Circle K among its clients. "You have to have an outstanding coffee program; if not, you're nothing more than second class."
Is that old oven, steamer or grill driving you nuts? If you are in a position to look into replacing some of your aging foodservice equipment, you may find some serious rebates as an incentive to upgrade to more energy efficient equipment.
Many utility companies across the U.S. have rebate programs and/or finance programs to help you replace inefficient and worn-out equipment.
For more information on what programs are available in your area, visit the ENERGY STAR Commercial Food Service Equipment Incentive Finder at: http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=cfsrebate.cfsrebate_locator
If you have any success stories with a program in your area, we'd love to hear about it! Tell us about it in the comment box below!
A February 6th article in edition of Nation's Restaurant News states that "rising heating bills will take a cut of already limited consumer discretionary spending, serving as a "crowding out" factor that will likely last through late spring."
Not surprisingly, restaurant's most likely to see a hit in sales are the ones located in the states hardest hit thus far this winter. I know, I was wondering the same thing...'who hasn't been hit by this harsh winter'
At any rate there are some other great tidbits of information in the article, courtesy of restaurant consulting group and research firm AlixPartners:
• Studies show consumers expect to spend around 9% less per restaurant meal this year vs. last year. This equates to the average consumer expecting to pay around $13.50/meal vs. $14.90/meal last year.
Here's your opportunity to take your fabulous Mango recipe and turn it into some cold, hard cash!
The National Mango Board invites chefs, dietitians, and foodservice directors working in commercial and non-commercial foodservice operations to enter its MANGOVER YOUR MENU Recipe Contest.
The Recipes will be evaluated based on: use of fresh mango (25%), flavor (25%), color and texture (25%), and originality (25%). Recipes can be an item from your menu, or a dish created for this competition that could be successfully prepared and served in your operation.
Categories included in the contest:
Create a new recipe or reinvent an existing favorite with fresh mango to MANGOVER YOUR MENU!
Enter online at www.mango.org/foodservice/recipe-contest
92% of restaurant chains to raise menu prices in 2014
The irony here is that I know foodservice manufacturers are trying to figure out how to increase sales…while news of operators facing tight margins and price hikes keep surfacing. Manfacturers have a tremendous opportunity here to create loyalty and add new accounts!
IFMA has stated in their reports, same with Technomic, that independent operators are seeking some kind of relief or value added partnership from their food suppliers. Well, before you start losing more revenue to local suppliers (because local means less shipping costs) you may want to consider reaching out to your current customers and potential new ones with a creative and attractive rebate program.
Consider that we know:
A friend of mine who works for an agency and does marketing for a major foodservice manufacturer whose brands you have definitely heard of, told me some news the other day. On a recent rebate campaign that operators participated in, they were given a choice: Choose a cash (check) rebate or choose points redeemable for merchandise, from one of the popular reward programs.
Well, the results were eye-opening: The manufacturer received hundreds of operators who participated in the program and 100% of them chose cash over points.
Let me repeat that: ALL of them chose cash.
Now, allow me to state that I am not here to bash reward programs. They offer a great service that is a logical way to retain loyalty. However, as a foodservice marketer in a down economy where independents (who are most likely to participate) are struggling to survive – I am recommending to put money behind your own cash rebates, especially considering the very hefty fees to have your brand be a part of a rewards program.
This strategy makes a great deal of sense for a number of reasons. Consider: