Featured Blog Posts – December 2009 Archive (56)


Non-Operator
A "Dr Seuss Reality Show" .. Really ?

Well, a new year and a new decade is upon us.

I had the chance to see an NBC News report about the "end of the decade" or the "decade that was" .



It was the 'digital decade', essentially. In fact, the reporter, said, that with all the

blogging, tweeting, and "on line" conversations, some may have thought that

they were in a "Dr Seuss" reality series.



We can look back at 2009, as the year that "Social Media" became part of the corporate landscape. The year… Continue

Added by Keith Bernhardt on December 31, 2009 at 2:32pm — 4 Comments


Non-Operator
How To Get Customer Feedback

What an amazing era we are experiencing! I am in awe of the distance we've come, in a very few years, from 50 websites in 1992.



There are computer applications for every aspect of our work and leisure lives.



A few minutes ago I was responding to TomTMaine and his query regarding paper comment cards… Continue

Added by Paul Green on December 30, 2009 at 11:43am — 3 Comments


Non-Operator
Some businesses just don’t get Twitter (and it shows..)

Twitter-mania took over the world in 2009. You couldn’t move without hearing a mention of a tweet or a new business or celebrity using the social media platform. The trouble is, too many bars, restaurants and businesses jumped on the bandwagon too quickly, long before they understood how the platform worked and instead have wasted countless hours tweeting the wrong tweets, following the wrong people and making countless mistakes in the process. It… Continue

Added by Barry Chandler on December 29, 2009 at 9:37pm — 3 Comments

Looking FOHward to 2010

Here are a few potential New Year's resolutions for food servers across all dining segments. Feel free to amend, challenge, or add to the list.



image credit: bp1.blogger.com



1. In 2010, I will learn to manage myself so that my employers can focus more on the guest's needs and less… Continue

Added by Michael Biesemeyer on December 29, 2009 at 3:00pm — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Flying Fish

My best friend Susan travels all the time and spends an inordinate amount of time in airports. So a coupla months back, she was stuck in the Minneapolis airport for several hours and decided to treat herself to a real dinner at a real restaurant in the terminal. Trust me, this is not a decision she made lightly, as she is not ever one to pamper herself or spend a penny of her daughters’ college money on frivolities like, well, eating.



So she goes to this place that carries the same… Continue

Added by Dorothy Frisch on December 28, 2009 at 3:49pm — 3 Comments

Labor Will Make or Break You

I have been thinking a lot recently about my own operation. How could I continue to find new opportunities to be more efficient and reduce expenses without affecting the guest? As most of you know, labor is our biggest expense; fixed labor is often a financial burden in slow times but necessary when busy. So how do you create the correct staffing model for your operation?



The first step is to look at it as an outsider. If you were critiquing someone else’s operation as a consultant,… Continue

Added by Chef Len Elias CEC on December 28, 2009 at 7:00am — 3 Comments


Non-Operator
New Advertising Programs and Rates for 2010

We have just posted the new media kit that includes advertising rates and social media programs for 2010.



We have a number of programs and will be happy to custom build a campaign to fit your social media marketing requirements.



For more information, click here.…

Continue

Added by FohBoh on December 27, 2009 at 11:11am — No Comments

An Easy Way to Collect Your Customers' Email Addresses

It's no secret that restaurant email marketing is a great way to connect with your most loyal customers, and ensure that they return. But one thing I often hear is "I don't have TIME to run an email campaign!" And, sure, to run a campaign that is attractive to your customers, you'll have to set aside time to create powerful content and build eye-catching emails.



But what about gathering your customer's email addresses? Do you have a stack of comment cards gathering dust in a pantry… Continue

Added by Erin Martin on December 26, 2009 at 2:58pm — 10 Comments

Holiday Concert Time (but not holiday music)...and Happy Boxing Day

Perhaps a good time to post some truly rare and awesome live music.

Enjoy the holiday weekend!!!



Pavarotti and Jon Bon Jovi "Let it Rain/Fa Che Piova"



I'm a moderate Bon Jovi fan but this song is perfect! I read that this has never been recorded in a studio and was written personally by Jon for Luciano and only ever performed here live...



The Pav and Bryan Adams "O Sloe Mio"

Simply awesome!...and a little… Continue

Added by Steve Paterson on December 26, 2009 at 5:55am — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Customer Relations = Loyalty, TracFone Sends a Message

As I read Bill Campion's " I'll Get Back to Ya Babe! " I could relate.



Customer service and customer relations seem to be in fail mode in an incredible number of businesses. I tend, now, to be on the defensive when contacting a business , expecting the worst, which sets the stage for a negative experience.



There are some businesses, however, that understand how important a… Continue

Added by Paul Green on December 26, 2009 at 12:50am — 4 Comments


Non-Operator
Holiday Wishes for 2010

Having just seen (again) Steve Martin’s classic sketch regarding Christmas wishes from an old Saturday Night Live, I’m tempted to follow suit, but will try to resist. Still, if I were granted just one wish this Christmas, ...



I’d wish for confidence. There are hazards remaining between us and a robust recovery, including the still-unresolved issue of commercial real estate defaults across lenders’ (and investors’) portfolios. Still, most economists and analysts believe… Continue

Added by Rod Guinn on December 25, 2009 at 3:30am — 4 Comments


Operator
Top Ten Food Trends for 2010

Experimentation nation, umami, and food with benefits are just three of the top 10 trends to watch in 2010, according to the experts at The Food Channel®. The website released its top 10 for ’10 today based on research conducted in conjunction with CultureWaves® and the International Food Futurists®. This year’s list identifies the significant food movements consumers, foodservice professionals and manufacturers should watch in the coming year.



“This year we are seeing a return to… Continue

Added by The Food Channel on December 24, 2009 at 8:42pm — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Resolutions and Revelations

Seizing market opportunities is something that all smart business people do to keep ahead of the game and stay competitive. When summer rolls around you roll out your new line of fruity iced cocktails, during the holiday season it’s all about corporate banquets and holiday parties. So what is on diners’ minds in the New Year? NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS!



Some interesting resolution facts:



• In 2010, about 45% of U.S. adults will make resolutions for the new year.

•… Continue

Added by Alyson Mar, RD on December 24, 2009 at 1:00am — No Comments

Holiday giving can last all year

Here are some resources for any restaurants and foodservice operators out there who'd like to get involved with a charity. I talked to several nonprofits that team up with restaurants - here is the info -







The Salvation Army accepts food service equipment, appliances and food prep supplies for their senior centers, adult day cares and other community programs. Just use the website directory to locate a… Continue

Added by Dani on December 23, 2009 at 8:59am — 1 Comment


Non-Operator
Are You Stuck Repeating the Same Marketing Mistakes?

There is a simple yet often ignored rule:



“If you are doing something that it's not working, it still won't work if you do more of the same.”



If you are investing in marketing and yet your restaurant is not getting the clients that you are expecting, obviously your marketing is not working for you.



Sometimes-marketing techniques that used to work, don't anymore. This could be because the marketplace is changing (more people are looking for restaurants online and… Continue

Added by Jose L Riesco on December 23, 2009 at 4:00am — 1 Comment

2000 – 2009 R.I.P.

A lot is being written about the decade we are about to leave behind. And they are not generally glowing reviews. If Yelp was hosting this, it would probably receive 3 ½ stars...but don’t most reviews on Yelp get 3 ½ stars?



The new millennium started off with fear. Remember that great hoodwink called “Y2K”? Then in March, a dotcom bust that forever changed millions of lives, including mine. That should have been a sign of the challenges we… Continue

Added by Michael L. Atkinson on December 23, 2009 at 12:16am — 11 Comments

What do you have to lose but the illusion that you are in control of your customers?

An excellent question posed by John Sviokla in the Harvard Business Review today.



http://blogs.hbr.org/sviokla/2009/12/better_customer_service_throug.html



Transparency with the consumer is one of the biggest fears that our business has to overcome with the restaurant industry during the sales process. Not once have I heard a potential customer tell me that our process is wrong or that our software isn't right for the consumer or that it won't make the establishment a… Continue

Added by Terri Hitchcock on December 22, 2009 at 9:30am — 1 Comment


Non-Operator
I'll Get Back To Ya Babe!



It never ceases to amaze me how some people just don’t get it. The latest service gaff in a continuing saga has to do with one of our local health clubs. I have excluded the name to protect the innocent. I promise you I’m sharing the facts, nothing but the facts - none of this has been fabricated or exaggerated.



It began on Monday, December 7th (almost a week ago). I called this health club, which is conveniently located near my house, to inquire about… Continue

Added by Bill Campion on December 22, 2009 at 7:00am — 6 Comments

Call me the poster girl for "cooking at home hazardous to your health"

A recent open letter from the National Restaurant Association in Nation's Restaurant News seeks to rally the industry around a proposed campaign to "debate the notions currently going unchallenged in the public forum" - notions suggesting consumers can save significant sums by eating at home.



While it's true that the mass media - TV, talk show hosts, etc. - has promoted this theory, it's not clear how well their message has resonated with consumers. According to NRA, research shows… Continue

Added by susan holaday on December 21, 2009 at 2:32pm — 7 Comments


Non-Operator
"If not me then who"?

I remember as a young assistant manager watching with dismay as employees, hourly and salaried alike, would walk by obvious issues/problems large or small and pass by without stopping to lift a finger to fix or help with anything. It was as if the issue/problem were invisible to them. I'm not talking about the earth-shattering "there's a bar fight in the lounge" type of issues. I'm talking about the operationally important and yet mundane kinds of problems/issues issues. For example the bev-nap… Continue

Added by Jerry A. Heilpern, CFBE, FMP on December 21, 2009 at 6:40am — 5 Comments

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DEPARTMENTS

Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries

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Jump start their appetites with this fabulous flatbread appetizer topped with beets, goat cheese, arugula and California Walnuts. For this and more great recipes, visit http://www.walnuts.org/food-professionals/trending-recipes/.

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National News

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The National Restaurant Association and EatStreet have released a free educational guide focusing on online ordering and emerging restaurant technology trends.

Boyd's Coffee Launches Single-Cup Coffees For Retail And Foodservice

The coffees come in a variety of roast levels and include organic and Rainforest Alliance Certified™ options: French No. 6®, Red Wagon® Organic Coffee, Good Morning™, Hi-Rev® (delivers more caffeine), and Lost Lake™ Decaf Organic Coffee.

Arby's Announces Development Deals With New And Existing Franchisees

ARG recently sold 14 company-operated restaurants in Tampa, FL to Mosaic Investments, Inc. (Mosaic), a fully integrated investment firm based in Atlanta. In addition to remodeling existing locations slated to commence at the end of 2014, Mosaic has committed to build 13 new Arby's restaurants in the Tampa area over the next nine years.

Smoothie King Appoints Vice President Of Business Development To Drive Brand's Expansion Across The U.S.

Prior to joining Smoothie King, Bruno served as vice president of retail sales, operations and franchise development for Fannie May Fine Chocolates, a division of 1800Flowers.com, where he oversaw a $69.5 million retail division that included 100 corporate stores and 45 franchised stores.

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: Michel Laberge: How synchronized hammer strikes could generate nuclear fusion - Michel Laberge (2014)

Our energy future depends on nuclear fusion, says Michel Laberge. The plasma physicist runs a small company with a big idea for a new type of nuclear reactor that could produce clean, cheap energy. His secret recipe? High speeds, scorching temperatures and crushing pressure. In this hopeful talk, he explains how nuclear fusion might be just around the corner.

TED: Sarah Lewis: Embrace the near win - Sarah Lewis (2014)

At her first museum job, art historian Sarah Lewis noticed something important about an artist she was studying: Not every artwork was a total masterpiece. She asks us to consider the role of the almost-failure, the near win, in our own lives. In our pursuit of success and mastery, is it actually our near wins that push us forward?

TED: Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces - Matthew Carter (2014)

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books -- remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

TED: Jeremy Kasdin: The flower-shaped starshade that might help us detect Earth-like planets - Jeremy Kasdin (2014)

Astronomers believe that every star in the galaxy has a planet, one fifth of which might harbor life. Only we haven't seen any of them -- yet. Jeremy Kasdin and his team are looking to change that with the design and engineering of an extraordinary piece of equipment: a flower petal-shaped "starshade" positioned 50,000 km from a telescope to enable imaging of planets about distant stars. It is, he says, the "coolest possible science."

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