Archive for the ‘Industry News’ Category

Hi All,
If you haven’t had a chance to read the newest issue of Food + Thought out yesterday, take a look. We included a short bit on Buffalo Wild Wings and their “Pick ‘em Challenge” promotion this fall. Here’s the gist and then read on, evidently, it’s working for them.

One of the most intriguing things about “scoring with games and entertainment” is that the game vendor’s website reports that interactive games can boost restaurant average checks by as much as 50%.


Excerpt from Food + Thought – “Scoring with Games”

This fall, guests at Buffalo Wild Wings have the chance to play the Pick ’Em Challenge, which pits their skill at picking professional football game winners against the picks of celebrity sports experts, including ESPN talent and pigskin hall of famers Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice. The highest weekly scorer in the game — provided by vendor NTN Buzztime, Inc. — at each restaurant receives a $25 gift card. The highest-scoring player across the entire chain each week will win a trip to play in a flag football game coached by celebrities in February at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.

The chain estimated that more than 100,000 of the chain’s guests, or an average of 143 guests per restaurant, will play the Pick ’Em Challenge this football season.


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The Wall Street Journal reported today that McDonald’s Corp. plans to raise menu prices to blunt higher costs, including what would be its first such increase in the U.S. in more than a year—a time when the burger chain’s sales have thrived amid lower prices.

Read the full article here: WSJ: McDonald’s to Raise Prices

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L.A. Planning Commission OKs rules for fast-food eateries in South L.A.


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This is a great story.

Starbucks recently announced that they were going to defy convention and both raise prices and slow-down service by instructing their “baristas” to make no more than 2 drinks at a time. So how do you mitigate the negative impact those two things can have on foot traffic?

Enhance the experience.

CNNTech: Starbucks Digital Network is Here

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How McDonald’s uses social media to connect

Rick Wion, director of social media for McDonald’s Corp., says social media avenues, such as Twitter, allow big corporations the opportunity to make the restaurant experience warmer and more intimate. “It’s really not about how many people are following you,” Wion said. “It’s about the level of engagement, really the strong connections you are making with customers.”

VIDEO: Nation’s Restaurant News spoke with Wion last week after his presentation to the National Restaurant Association Marketing Executives fall gathering in Scottsdale, Ariz. Wion discusses how McDonald’s operates its Twitter feed, social media and franchisees, as well as keeping your legal department in the loop.

Read more: http://nrn.com/article/mcdonalds-talks-about-twitter-social-media?ad=quick-service&utm_source=MagnetMail&utm_medium=email&utm_term=msmart@merkleyandpartners.com&utm_content=NRN-News-NRNam-10-18-10&utm_campaign=How%20McDonald’s%20uses%20social%20media%20to%20connect#ixzz12isd6gq6

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Sonic is upgraded from perform to outperform: http://www.tickerspy.com/newswire/?p=3402

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Hi All,
From NRN.com today, a new Consumer study ranks top 20 restaurant commercials. Take a look if you get a chance – interesting list. I had never seen the Starbucks ad that came in at number one – pretty cool. And, I would have expected to see the new Domino’s work in the top 10 as their “real” approach has reportedly been a key component to their successful turnaround this year. But the real surprise is Pizza Hut’s “$10 Any Pizza” fooper (e.g. food footage and supers) coming in at #4. All you need is a cheese-pull?

A Sonic ad, The New Sonic Good came in at #20.

And incidentally, this is the same company that ranked our Mercedes-Benz spot #1 in the automotive category last year. Enjoy!

Consumer Study Ranks Top Restaurant Commercials
October 14, 2010 | By Mark Brandau

Los Angeles-based Ace Metrix found that relevant and informative ads scored high in its ranking of the top 20 restaurant commercials of 2010.

Ace Metrix gave the ads an Ace Score based on consumers rating of the commercials’ watchability and persuasiveness. Conveying the desirability of menu items also contributed to higher Ace Scores.

Advertising research compiled for the restaurant sector year-to-date showed that operators wanting to get the most bang for their marketing buck need to teach consumers to reach consumers. The year’s most effect spots “tell consumers something they don’t know,” said Dr. JuYoung Lee, chief scientist and co-founder of Ace Metrix.

Chains like Starbucks, Domino’s, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell all had Ace Scores well above the restaurant sector average of 580. The top five commercials were:

Starbucks: The Big Picture
Domino’s Pizza: Crazy Thing to Make Food Look Good
Domino’s Pizza: Take the Pizza Out of the Oven and Take a Picture
Pizza Hut: You Don’t Have to Settle
Dairy Queen: Lips Got Blizzard a Spoon
To see the full ranking, as well as watch the commercials, visit Ace Metrix’s site.

Read more: http://www.nrn.com/article/top-20-restaurant-commercials-2010-ranked-consumers#ixzz12SVGVneU

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