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Monthly Archives: February 2012

Top 5 Restaurant Food Product Trend Picks for 2012

Here is a list of the predictions for top food innovations for 2012. It’s an interesting list in that I don’t usually find myself so out of sync with these types of predictions but this one is pretty out there.

The first pick is a no-brainer in that I think it has already happened. And it is gaining more and more momentum.I would definitely find a way to work it into your restaurant business plan if you haven’t already.

I can’t say I see any signs of the other four picks taking off, however. I know some people have started to use quinoa in more things, and there is a big coconut water push by several companies but on the … Keep reading

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Free Restaurant Scheduling Software

Doing employee schedules in the restaurant business can be a royal pain in the you know what. Especially if you listen to the employees.

I made it a point never to let employees see a schedule in progress because they would immediately start angling for changes. I also let them know they could request things but not all requests would be granted and no requests regarding who they worked with or didn’t work with would be honored.

Once you open that can of worms, forget it. You’ve lost all control and you end up with certain shifts filled with your weakest and least competent people while all the people who are friends outside work end up together and spend more … Keep reading

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SMS (Text Message) Restaurant Marketing Tips and Tricks

In the old days, about five years ago, restaurant marketing was hard enough. You still had to do all the old things, but you also had to market online and also deal with the fact that people were starting to post reviews online as well, and not all of them were good.

Oh for the old days when things were simple!

Now, you have all that, plus you need a mobile version of your website and you need to have a twitter account, a facebook page, join foursquare, get some videos on youtube, podcast something, monitor a million review sites, get to the top of Google places, check out some new thing called pinterest and still drop in on the … Keep reading

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Awesome Restaurant Food Truck Inforgraphic

Food trucks are already starting to feel a little like last year’s fad to me but what do I know- they seem to still be going strong in a lot of markets or even just taking off in others that haven’t had the crush of new food trucks descend on their community yet.

The following article has an awesome fact filled food truck graphic. If you are thinking about breaking into this filed, go for it- just make sure you have the permit part of your restaurant business plan under control as this seems to be the number one issue operators are running into- aside from fighting for space among all the other food trucks out there!

91% of consumers … Keep reading

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Pros and Cons of Family-Owned Restaurants

Managing a restaurant can be a very tricky job and in my experience few people are born managers- most of the good ones got that way by trial and error and by having a good role model.

The job becomes infinitely more complex when it involves family because roles change and decisions become about more than what is best for the business. I understand why many people choose to pull their family into their business, and sometimes it works out. But often times, it turns out worse than it would have if you hadn’t.

Just for two examples- it is much harder to fire an employee who should be fired if they are also family. It is also much harder … Keep reading

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10 Radical Ways to Raise Cash and Start a Restaurant

If you need money to launch your restaurant business plan into reality, ask yourself how hard and how creatively you are looking for it if you have been turned down by the traditional sources.

Here is a slideshow about ten different creative ideas regular people used to raise money to start the business they wanted. These are not restaurant stories but the idea is the same and the cash will spend the same once you’ve gotten it in your hands!

If you aren’t having the success you want with your first plan, I have two restaurant specific suggestions for you. The first is that you might be trying to start too big.

Is there a way to start smaller and … Keep reading

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Hell’s Kitchen Is Not The Real Restaurant Business

I have to agree with the author of the article quoted below. Although it may make good TV, there is not a lot about Hell’s Kitchen, or the show I like even less, Kitchen Nightmares, to recommend.

Don’t get the idea that this is how a proper kitchen is run, or that a failing restaurant can be turned around with a 48 hour makeover and a few shouting sessions.

While there are some good ideas and nuggets of wisdom that float through the show, there is also a ton of crap and flat out bad advice that expecting the non industry person to sort it out is unrealistic at best.

The way to run a restaurant right is to treat … Keep reading

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Pinterest Restaurant Marketing Guide

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Not another social media website to worry about! I hadn’t even heard of Pinterest until very recently but apparently there are already a gazillion members and if you aren’t on it you are way behind the times. Or not.

I am all for using social marketing to reach your current customer and find new customers. I am. But this stuff takes time to do and a lot of time to do well. Adding yet another outlet for it is a big commitment if you are going to make it work.

So is this new site worth your time? I am inclined to say no, not yet. But instead of my going by my biased … Keep reading

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Restaurant Success Story: Cafe Fudgelato

There are lots of perks to doing what I do but probably one of the nicest is hearing from people who have been successful in their restaurant businesses.

After all, the point of doing all this is to help people get a real restaurant open and running and making money.

Otherwise, it’s a lot of work for nothing or it’s just daydreaming, which is cheaper but a lot less satisfying in the end!

Of course I certainly don’t take the credit for his success or anyone else’s. What I am able to help people do is proper planning and working on getting funding to open a restaurant like they’ve always wanted.

The effort comes from them but I like to … Keep reading

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Value Doesn’t Always Mean Slashing Prices

The following is a guest post from Andrew Call at The Back Burner.

Let’s face it, customers aren’t just looking for the best deals when they shop for new eateries. Expectations when it comes to atmosphere and service are higher than ever, and buying a bargain burger served by an inattentive employee just isn’t cutting it. If you’re going to survive in an industry that eats up and spits out new restaurants like chewing tobacco you need to focus on areas like sustainability, portion size, and providing a complete package when it comes to dining out.

When considering value you need to realize that the word doesn’t necessarily mean saving money. There are a number of factors that customers … Keep reading

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