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  • Six strategies to build brand recognition
    value command higher prices attract better employees and most of all bring you more money But it needs to be the right brand for the right audience 1 Be specific about your target market Do not try to create a brand that appeals to everyone You will end up with a brand that is unclearly defined Target your brand to the specific demographics to which your restaurant appeals Is your neighbourhood more family friendly or full of students Are you surrounded by busy condo dwelling urban professionals Are there a lot of offices nearby Do you have a good lunch crowd You need to cater your brand image to the right crowd 2 Create a positive perception of your brand name Define your brand using as few words as possible and drive your definition to your customers You should be able to tell potential customers exactly what to expect from your restaurant operation by stringing together a few key words like homemade comfort stylish elegant fresh or fun Just by reading key words customers should be able to tell the type of establishment you run 3 Ensure brand consistency Everything in your restaurant must convey what your brand wants to say including the interior design and décor menu prices food drinks uniforms marketing advertising website and customer service Your brand has to be cohesive throughout your entire operation and must reflect its desired image and vision Developing a powerful brand image involves the entire restaurant design from lighting and flooring to compelling graphic images and menu boards Ensure everything is consistent in look feel and colour The different elements should have a recognizable style that is not only apparent inside your establishment but also outside online and in print 4 Deliver your brand promise The most important element of branding

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/Sixstrategiestobuildbrandrecognition.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Dress up your table: Four ways to make your menu work for you
    establishes one of the first key impressions of your restaurant It is a tangible tool that can reinforce a positive or negative image even before one reviews the menu itself The following are four tips to help you get the most from your menus 1 Know your theme There are various design elements that must be taken into consideration when designing a menu cover including colour texture layout and branding These elements should be a reflection of your overall theme Is your restaurant refined and sophisticated or casual and family oriented Your menu cover should be an expression of the ambiance the decor and overall image of your restaurant All these factors will determine the type of menu that best suits your needs 2 Stick to your brand The worst thing a restaurant can do is have no branding on the menu cover which identifies where your guests are dining The menu cover should clearly reflect the name and logo Remember that this is another opportunity for branding and ultimately promoting your restaurant 3 Stay current Periodic updates are necessary to keep your menu cover fresh and relevant It s preferable to renew menus before they begin to appear outdated or worn The best time to replace or update the cover is when your restaurant undergoes a rebranding anniversary or a change in decor It is the most important aspect of your table dressing and should be cohesive with your napkins wall colour table cover and signage material Your table setting should be a reflection of your restaurant s image and deliver an authentic dining experience 4 Quality materials and design What type of menu then will capture the attention of your patrons That depends on the unique look that each individual restaurant wishes to capture and convey The prestige

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/DressupyourtableFourwaystomakeyour.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Today's tip for Canada's restaurant and foodservice industry: Utilize professional food photography
    Robberecht Jordan Knox Go Utilize professional food photography July 15 2013 Tweet Leave a comment There has been a long history of restaurants using images of food as part of their menu design When done properly pictures can create interest in a dish and influence purchase decisions Digital image technology has advanced to the point where capturing and manipulating food pictures are cost effective and accessible to even the smallest operator When not utilized properly though images can have a negative impact on consumers impressions There are several pitfalls to avoid when using food photography Unless you are a trained photographer use an expert with experience working with food subjects Understanding the art of how to make dishes look appealing and presenting them well takes more than just an expensive camera Preparing and presenting food to look attractive through the lens is very different than preparing it in the kitchen The images should look like the food that will actually be served to the guest Pictures establish guest expectations leading to disappointment if the reality falls short of the promise Courtesy of David Swanston a Hospitality and Foodservice Consultant Principal of Focused Industry Training Seminars and is an instructor at

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/professionalfoodphotography.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Money-making menus: A case study in menu optimization
    items for all day parts On average customers only spend 90 seconds reading a menu making it important to remove items that aren t relevant to a purchase decision The lunch dinner menu section included 181 items yet the top 12 margin generating items represented over 62 per cent of total margin indicating an opportunity to reduce the number of menu items offered Reducing menu length by eliminating underperforming menu items allows greater control over which items are seen and ordered by the customer Tactics The menu was split into three separate menus breakfast lunch dinner and dessert The lunch dinner menu was reformatted to a two fold three panel format and the panel size was reduced to letter size This format increased item visibility because all panels except the back panel are visible when the menu is opened Locating less relevant and lower margin menu items on the back panel can discourage sales of those items and shift sales to higher margin items on other panels Menu items geared towards children and seniors had lower margins Positioning these items on the back panel made the menu easier to handle for seniors and children since the menu may be folded to a single panel Nearly one third of menu items were eliminated due to underperformance Outcome We increased white or negative space on the pages making the menu easier to read and increasing the visibility of relevant high margin items for promotion This also decreases the amount of time required to make a purchase decision creating faster table turnaround times Alcohol Opportunity Marginally increase alcoholic beverage sales On average the margin from a single portion alcoholic beverage was nearly twice that of the average non alcoholic beverage Less than eight per cent of customers purchased an alcoholic beverage Westside did not wish to increase alcohol sales significantly because they wanted to maintain the family atmosphere but were open to moderate increases Tactics Huntsville is in Ontario s Muskoka region a destination for many cottagers Capitalizing on the regional Muskoka brand Westside added a locally brewed premium beer and featured it with a photograph The new menu highlighted the alcohol section with background shading and prominently positioned this section on the first panel seen by customers opening the menu Outcome The number of customers purchasing alcohol increased by 27 per cent and margin from alcohol per customer increased by 29 per cent Non alcoholic beverages Opportunity Optimize beverage sales to increase average margin Ninety seven per cent of customers purchased non alcoholic beverages in 2012 A quarter of those purchases were fountain beverages sold in three sizes small large and bottomless Direct competitors do not offer bottomless fountain beverages and average large beverage prices were 10 per cent lower than Westside Indirect competitors offered bottomless fountain beverages for roughly 20 per cent less than Westside Challenge Large fountain beverages were the most popular beverage after coffee representing 96 per cent of fountain beverage sales Competitive pricing made it difficult to increase

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/Moneymakingmenusmenuoptimization.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Foodservice sales moderate in the first quarter of 2011
    rising disposable income and healthy job creation commercial foodservice sales in Canada slowed to 3 1 growth in the first quarter of 2011 following a solid 5 2 increase in the fourth quarter of 2010 The weak start to 2011 can be attributed largely to British Columbia where the base effect of hosting the 2010 Winter Olympics and the ongoing impact of the HST dragged down national growth rates across all segments Excluding British Columbia foodservice sales in the rest of Canada grew by a healthy 5 0 Sales by segment Weak demand in the Maritimes and Western Canada led to sales at quick service restaurants in the country rising a modest 2 8 in the first quarter compared to 5 0 growth in the fourth quarter of 2010 Lower sales in British Columbia restrained national full service restaurant sales growth to 3 9 after a solid 5 9 increase in the fourth quarter Excluding British Columbia sales at full service restaurants in the rest of Canada jumped 6 0 Caterers continued to lead all segments with a 4 6 sales increase in the first quarter Growth was driven by strong demand in the Prairies and Newfoundland and Labrador Not all segments posted growth however Sales at drinking places slipped 2 9 in the first quarter after falling throughout 2010 with declines in Central and Western Canada Performance by province At the provincial level a booming economy propelled total foodservice sales in Newfoundland and Labrador and Alberta by 9 5 and 6 9 respectively in the first quarter A rebound in sales at full service restaurants boosted total foodservice sales in Ontario by 5 1 Foodservice sales in Manitoba and Saskatchewan both grew by 4 5 in the first quarter For Manitoba this marks a big improvement over the sluggish

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/Foodservicesalesfirstquarter2011.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Grocery and quick-service experience growth, and the impact of cash-strapped customers
    the expense of FSR and bars This past decade was supposed to be a golden age for full service restaurants As boomers aged they were supposed to go out more often to full service restaurants and reduce their number of visits to quick service restaurants But that s not what happened Grocery stores offered better meal replacements and more restaurant quality items Quick service chains owned value and convenience in the mind of consumers by building the breakfast segment and snack occasions The number of tourist occasions in restaurants dropped like a stone by as much as 60 per cent Tourists used to account for over 20 per cent of all restaurant occasions in Canada A key component to reversing this trend is to learn from your competitors There is an old adage in the restaurant business that success comes when you offer people what they cannot make at home Cash strapped consumers The best predictor of overall restaurant sales growth is an increase in personal disposable income While incomes grew over the past 10 years consumer debt levels also grew at alarming rates Consumer debt is now 75 per cent higher than it was 20 years ago People have more disposable income but at the same time they are cash strapped by their debt load for housing and consumer goods How should a restaurant operator deal with a cash strapped consumer Treat them better than your competitors Deliver on the value you provide When you work hard on what you are really good at you will succeed You win by taking care of the 20 30 per cent of your customers who are the 40 60 per cent of your business Food and labour cost shocks When major costs go up restaurant operators are tempted to raise prices Unfortunately

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/salesgrowth.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • 10 tips to better pricing
    Ithaca N Y low real estate costs but only 3 50 at Chau Chau City in downtown Boston The reason why Hai Hong can charge a 29 premium is because it provides significant value it is the only dim sum restaurant in Ithaca while there are many in Boston 3 Create a value statement Every company should have a value statement that clearly articulates why customers should purchase their product over competitors offerings Be specific in listing reasons this is not a time to be modest This statement will boost the confidence of your frontline so they can look customers squarely in the eye and say I know that you have options but here are the reasons why you should buy our product Key statements can be along the lines that we won a best of award or testimonials from customers 4 Reinforce to employees that it is okay to earn high profits I ve found that many employees are uncomfortable setting prices above what they consider to be fair and are quick to offer unnecessary discounts It is fair to charge what the market will bear prices to compensate for the hard work and financial risk necessary to bring products to market It is also important to reinforce the truism that most customers are not loyal if a new product offers a better value more attributes and or cheaper price many will defect 5 Realize that a discount today doesn t guarantee a premium tomorrow Many people believe that offering a discount as an incentive to trial a product will lead to future full price purchases In my experience this rarely works out Offering periodic discounts serves price sensitive customers which is a great strategy but often devalues a product in customers minds This devaluation can impede future full price purchases Promotions should generally be thought of as a method to serve price sensitive customers keep they ll return and pay full price expectations low 6 Understand that customers have different pricing needs In virtually every facet of business product development marketing distribution companies develop strategies based on the truism that customers differ from each other However when it comes to pricing many companies behave as though their customers are identical by setting just one price for each product The key to developing a comprehensive pricing strategy involves embracing and profiting from the fact that customers pricing needs differ in three primary ways pricing plans product preferences and product valuations Pick a plan versioning and differential pricing tactics serve these diverse needs 7 Provide pick a plan options Customers are often interested in a product but refrain from purchasing simply because the pricing plan does not work for them While some want to purchase outright others may prefer a selling strategy such as rent lease prepay or all you can eat A pick a plan strategy activates these dormant customers New pricing plans attract customers by providing ownership options mitigating uncertain value offering price assurance and overcoming financial constraints

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/10tipstobetterpricing.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Food prices continue to creep higher
    Elliott July 4 2011 Leave a comment Consumers paid 4 2 more for food at grocery stores in May 2011 compared to May 2010 according to Statistics Canada Food prices have steadily increased over the past 12 months due to rising global food prices Items with higher price tags at grocery stores in May included coffee and tea 11 4 bread 10 6 flour 6 6 eggs 6 2 and pasta products 6 1 Since last July global food prices have jumped 35 due to unfavourable weather conditions rising transportation costs investor speculation and increasing demand to feed a growing population In particular soaring grain prices have pushed up prices for bread flour and pasta products at the local checkout counter Consumers aren t just seeing higher food prices at the grocery store Menu prices rose by 3 2 in May following an average of 2 7 in the first four months of 2011 May s menu inflation represents the highest level since August 2009 This may be just the beginning as menu prices could climb even higher According to the new CRFA Restaurant Outlook Survey 80 of respondents cited rising food prices as the number one issue having a

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/risingglobalfoodprices.aspx (2016-02-14)
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