Featured Blog Posts – February 2012 Archive (24)

Restaurants: How to Make the Most of Facebook's New Look for Pages

The official announcement from Facebook is today, but there are tips floating around the interwebs.  Below are a rundown of some links to check out.

This is an opportunity for restaurants to really think about how you graphically represent your brand.  There's a large "cover" image that will go at the top of your page.  It's not…

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Added by Josh Hersh on February 29, 2012 at 6:53am — 3 Comments

3 Tips for Choosing Which Social Media Site Is Best for Your Restaurant

Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, UrbanSpoon? HELP!

Restaurateurs are finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with the many options for social media marketing today. How do you decide which site is best for your restaurant?

 

(This article was originally featured in the Louisiana Restaurant Association's eNewsletter, The Dish.) 

 

Consider Your Time Constraints

If you have a limited amount of time to spend on actively marketing your…

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Added by Ryan Sides on February 23, 2012 at 7:00am — 6 Comments

Breaking Out of Casual and Into Fine Dining

Here I am, entrepreneur by day and FOH by night. One thing I do have to say is that the service industry is amazing for the reasons of great hours, unique interactions and lots of room for growth. Being a FOH employee from busser to server to bartender has taught me a lot about myself, from how I interact with others to how I handle my own stress. Growth in this business has been wonderful except for the fact that because I started in casual dining, I am stuck with it. 

Living…

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Added by Greg Coll on February 22, 2012 at 6:57pm — No Comments

Craft Cocktails are the Latest Trend

For generations Americans have had a fairly straightforward approach to cocktails – gin and tonic, highball, rum and coke – without ever giving a second thought to the possibilities a true bartender genius is capable of. Back in the 1800s and early 1900s, specialty cocktails were commonplace, featuring interesting flavor pairings and even more interesting names.



Those days are starting to come back as the craft cocktail movement gains momentum in big cities including New York and…

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Added by Kathryn Sahr on February 22, 2012 at 11:55am — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Ten Legal Errors Restaurants Make in Their Social Media Sweepstakes and Contests

Restaurants frequently market through a sweepstakes or contest on Facebook or other social media. A prize promotion can publicize an updated menu, the opening of a new location, the revamping of a menu, or promote loyalty among followers.

Yet, in their enthusiasm for using this exciting marketing tool, restaurateurs frequently expose themselves to legal risk. Here is a list of ten mistakes that restaurants frequently make in launching a social media prize…

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Added by Kyle-Beth Hilfer on February 22, 2012 at 8:35am — No Comments


Operator
You're Hired! Celebrity Apprentice Meets Cafe Metro

This week my company had the unique opportunity to be involved with one of the biggest “reality” TV shows out there, The Celebrity Apprentice, Sunday’s at 9pm on NBC-TV.

 

I’m the Director of Marketing and Social Media for Café Metro’s parent company S.T. Management Group here in the quiet little…

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Added by Ty Sullivan on February 21, 2012 at 6:00pm — 1 Comment

Nobody Puts HR in a Corner

“Nobody puts HR in a corner.” Recognize the line? It’s a classic. Well, it’s a slightly-adjusted classic. “Nobody puts Baby in a corner,” might sound more familiar. It’s the line from “Dirty Dancing” when Patrick Swayze retrieves Jennifer Gray from a corner seat so they can do the last dance of the season. The point being that her character has grown up and can be more than her peers and parents expected.…

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Added by Nate DaPore on February 21, 2012 at 11:50am — No Comments

Confrontation...Compromise or Combat?

If you lead a company, a property, a kitchen, or a team of any size, you do not have the luxury of being “non-confrontational.”  If you are working toward a goal, that means you and your team are being stretched to perform at higher levels.  That will produce stress and expose weaknesses.  As the leader you cannot allow such stresses to keep you from achievement, and therefore you will have to…ahem…confront them.

Confrontation does not have to be a combat.  It shouldn’t be.  You can…

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Added by Joseph D'Alessandro on February 21, 2012 at 7:30am — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Are Foodservice Buyers Smarter than 5th Graders?

Part 1



The Foodservice Chain Buyer's job is to minimize the risk associated with the fluctuating food processing and commodity markets.  The Fortune 500 foodservice chains buy on the cash market, use "futures" transactions and employ advanced buying techniques, which makes them  smarter than the average 5th grader!



Emerging chains and progressive owner / operators can move faster than the big chains, providing them…

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Added by Fred Favole on February 18, 2012 at 1:00pm — No Comments

Pinterest: How can restaurants use this online pinboard?

There’s been a lot of buzz around Pinterest in the media lately. According to an article published this month in TechCrunch citing data collected by comScore, Pinterest hit 10 million unique visitors per month faster than any standalone website ever. Its rise to prominence can be demographically credited to 18-34 year old women from the…

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Added by Jon Rock on February 16, 2012 at 8:00am — 2 Comments

Making Succesful Concessions

Is it an impulse or a compulsion that makes you want to eat that soft pretzel? Or is it simply the tangy mustard pumped onto it? Displayed food must look its best when laid out for speed and convenience, even for captive audiences at arenas, stadiums and outdoor entertainment venues.

No matter whether concession fare is pretzels, hot…

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Added by Joe Ferri on February 12, 2012 at 8:00am — No Comments

American Barbecue: Delicious AND Nutritious?

Tricks to make home-style cuisine appealing to the health conscious diner 

Unfortunately for the restaurant industry, diners trying to watch their waistlines typically avoid most barbecue fare.  Creamy coleslaw, buttery cornbread, cheesy macaroni, and generous slabs of meat are most often associated with this beloved culinary treasure.

Rather unfairly, barbecue has built up a bad reputation for expanding summer waistlines.  This is quite a shame,…

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Added by Lucy Needham on February 9, 2012 at 10:09am — No Comments

Google+ for Foodservice - What's the holdup?

Google+ appears to be having a problem with connecting to the consumer audience out there - I want to know why.

Could it be that the brands that appeal to consumers, are not there yet enmass?  Could it be that the engagement options are limited?  Could it be that the 3rd party developer community that has made Facebook so useful is not yet invited to the party?

The answer is yes, yes, and yes - but I'm…

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Added by Steven Groves on February 9, 2012 at 10:08am — No Comments

Restaurant Social Media Explained

Ok so I am jumping on the "[Insert your interest here] Social Media Explained" train. If you haven't seen them there are a few that have been circulating the web using Donuts as a point of reference as well as using the bathroom to explain social media. 

Well here's my stab at restaurant social media…

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Added by Sarah on February 8, 2012 at 12:30pm — 3 Comments

Defining Focus in Foodservice Hiring

In the restaurant industry, being fully staffed — with top-quality employees — is Holy Grail of HR. It is constantly sought after, rarely achieved and rumored to be difficult to achieve. More often than not a restaurant has a decent team, with a few outstanding employees and the occasional bad apple. It’s not uncommon to find a manager or head chef stepping in to cover a “no-show” staff member.

 

Foodservice faces such high turnover rates that managers often jump to quickly…

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Added by Nate DaPore on February 7, 2012 at 3:30pm — No Comments

Service First

Service First

By: Monica Constantino

Service is more important than food.  It defines the restaurant EXPERIENCE.  Food may define the restaurant, but we all know we can find great Korean BBQ in the tiniest food truck in Brooklyn, or the best fried chicken in the deepest neighborhood in Compton.  The experience is what the consumer is looking for today.  As the economy shifts upward, the competition…

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Added by UCLAExtensionFood&Wine on February 7, 2012 at 1:00pm — No Comments

5 Reasons To Launch A Facebook Contest for Your Restaurant

As many restaurant owners have found, investing in an active Facebook page takes consistency, creativity, and time.

Creating a Facebook page and leaving it to sit dormant is like having customers sitting in your booths and no servers to take their order or fill up their glasses.  Customers get annoyed and your restaurant look like they don't care.

Running a contest on your restaurant's Facebook fan page is a great way to grow your…

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Added by Josh Hersh on February 7, 2012 at 5:56am — 8 Comments

7 Ways To Integrate Social Media AND Email Marketing, When Promoting Your Restaurant

Have you been trying to figure out how to integrate Social Media into the email communications you send out for your Restaurant? Fear not! It's actually far easier than you think.

Each, taken on their own, are effective. Put them together though and you will have something very powerful. Email marketing and social media go together perfectly,…

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Added by Chris Leo on February 6, 2012 at 6:30am — No Comments


Non-Operator
Top Chef Down Under...really?

Reality Chef Programming:

I'll be the first to tell you I throw pillows at the flatscreen when young chef's banter with some of the most respected chefs in the country. "Alfred Portale just dosent understand my style of food" Jesus really? I need to throw bigger objects at my Television (my son is trying to put a parental lock on the food network, who's the parent I ask you ) Chef Portale was doing the most amazing cutting edge cuisine when most of these "Chefs" were in…

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Added by Chefdaveabella@gmail.com on February 3, 2012 at 2:15pm — No Comments


Non-Operator
Scary Ideas? Good Ideas?

There are two distinct, yet related, ideas in brand extensions which have been in the news recently.  I’m going to be following both with more than idle curiosity to see if they create added brand awareness, added traffic, or a negative backlash -- or all three.

First ... Friendly’s and Burger…

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Added by Rod Guinn on February 2, 2012 at 3:00am — 2 Comments

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DEPARTMENTS

Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries

Smartbrief

QSRs squeeze into unconventional locations

Nontraditonal quickservice units are popping up wherever people are, moving beyond street-side and mall locations to military -More

Optimize efficiency with an applicant tracking system

Businesses increasingly are turning to software programs that make applicant tracking more efficient.  -More

Read the NRA statement on NLRB's joint employer decision

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All-new pasta dish features Grand Cru® Alpine-style cheese
Roth® Grand Cru® cheeses have a complex and full-bodied flavor that's crafted to achieve excellence in your menu applications. Try it in Manicotti en Croute with Brandied Fig Dipping Sauce. This elegant and inventive dish recently won our recipe contest for postsecondary culinary students, and is perfect as a sophisticated appetizer, passed hors d'oeuvre or savory dessert.

JOBS & CAREERS

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National News

Darden Announces Leadership Succession Plan

Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE: DRI) announced that Clarence Otis is stepping down as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Darden's Board of Directors has appointed the Company's current Independent Lead Director, Charles A. Ledsinger, Jr., as Independent Non-Executive Chairman of the Board, effective immediately. The Company also announced that it has amended its corporate governance policies to provide for the separation of the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer roles.

National Restaurant Association Statement on NLRB Joint Employer Decision

Today the National Restaurant Association issued the following statement regarding the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) decision asserting McDonald’s Corporation is a joint employer of its franchisees:

National Restaurant Association Issues Support for Clearer ACA Definition of Seasonal Employment

The bipartisan legislation will align the definitions of seasonal employment in the Affordable Care Act and streamline the applicable large employer determination process.

Rising India, Inc. Announces Acquisition Strategy Toward a Sizable Slice of the QSR Pizza Pie

Rising India, Inc. (OTC: RSII), announces today it will immediately begin work toward the acquisition of up to 5 profitable stores in the popular Quick Serve Pizza Restaurant segment. Current targets are currently earning about $450,000 in revenues per year, per store. Acquisition of targets would provide immediate cash flow identified from profitable longstanding, absentee owner operations with proven model success.

Panera Bread Company Reports Q2 2014 Diluted EPS of $1.82

Q2 2014 Revenue increased 7% to $631 million - Q2 2014 Company-owned comparable net bakery-cafe transactions up 0.4%

CROWD FUNDING

If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.

TED TALKS VIDEO

TED: Ze Frank: Are you human? - Ze Frank (2014)

Have you ever wondered: Am I a human being? Ze Frank suggests a series of simple questions that will determine this. Please relax and follow the prompts. Let's begin …

TED: Heather Barnett: What humans can learn from semi-intelligent slime - Heather Barnett (2014)

Inspired by biological design and self-organizing systems, artist Heather Barnett co-creates with physarum polycephalum, a eukaryotic microorganism that lives in cool, moist areas. What can people learn from the semi-intelligent slime mold? Watch this talk to find out.

TED: Shih Chieh Huang: Sculptures that’d be at home in the deep sea - Shih Chieh Huang (2014)

When he was young, artist Shih Chieh Huang loved taking toys apart and perusing the aisles of night markets in Taiwan for unexpected objects. Today, this TED Fellow creates madcap sculptures that seem to have a life of their own—with eyes that blink, tentacles that unfurl and parts that light up like bioluminescent sea creatures.

TED: Nikolai Begg: A tool to fix one of the most dangerous moments in surgery - Nikolai Begg (2013)

Surgeons are required every day to puncture human skin before procedures — with the risk of damaging what's on the other side. In a fascinating talk, find out how mechanical engineer Nikolai Begg is using physics to update an important medical device, called the trocar, and improve one of the most dangerous moments in many common surgeries.

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