A local good deed evolves national food brand

By Karen Post on April 15, 2014
Sysco Food Jacksonville, brand up with local program

This year I’ve had the pleasure of speaking to 5 regions of the Florida Chapter Club Managers Association of America (FLCMAA). The FLCMAA is a trade group made up of private clubs, most of which have food and beverage and hospitality programs. Last week, I addressed the Northern chapter in Jacksonville, FL where Sysco Foods was the host.

We all know Sysco, the big box restaurant food and supply distributor. After my presentation on branding, we went on a tour of the facility, which was very impressive.

What really struck me was how the company focuses on the internal culture that emphasizes the team and recognizes everyone’s contributions. Everywhere I looked there were signs highlighting employees and their important roles in delivering on Sysco’s brand promise.

7 tips for designing a logo for your restaurant

By Jocelyn Ring on April 9, 2014
Restaurant Logos

You asked, we answered

We received a letter from a reader who asked

“I don’t have a logo for my restaurant and I need one. I don’t know where to start. Do you have any tips or steps to take? Thanks, Mitch”

Great question, Mitch. We sure do have some tips and steps for you to follow. You’ve heard us say time and again that your brand is not just your logo or tagline. That’s true, your brand is an overarching strategy and like the DNA of your business. The logo is one element that will support your brand, also known as a touch point.

What happens in Vegas does not need to stay in Vegas.

By Karen Post on April 1, 2014
Branding lessons from Vegas

I just got back from Sin City. I addressed the International Pizza Expo, an annual event dedicated to the passion and profits around pizza. The 4-day event was produced by Pizza Today the leading pizza industry magazine.

I always have a great time in Las Vegas, as it is a playground for marketers. In the picture below you will see some of my new friends from Mask US a brand costume mascot company. There’s so much to experience here and to stimulate every sense from entertainment, to dining on amazing food, to drinking great wine and vegging out at the spa. I worked hard. I spoke to hundreds of pizzapreneurs on the power of branding and I played hard, too.

The Las Vegas Visitors and Convention Authority launched that infamous tagline in 2003, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” with great success, but this week to help you grow your brand and business I’ll share what I saw in Vegas.

Rethinking your restaurant’s brand strategy?

By Jocelyn Ring on March 26, 2014
rethinking brand

3 questions to ask first (and 3 easy makeover solutions)

Let me ask you a question.

When you hear the word “brand,” what do you think it means?

Marketing tactics?

Sure, these all play a part in branding.

But, in fact, branding is much more than just these items.

I like to say branding is what people think, feel and expect whenever they interact with your company.
Branding is an overarching image.

It’s ingrained in everything you do—your operations, your message, all your touch points and your marketing.

It’s the DNA of the company.

When a company is thinking of rebranding itself, it can feel quite overwhelming.

So before you dive deep into the world of rebranding, it’s important to ask three questions first to determine where your brand currently stands.

3 tips for handling a bad online restaurant review

By Jocelyn Ring on March 19, 2014
bad review

You asked, we answered. This week’s blog post is an answer to a question submitted by one of our Restaurant Branding Roadmap readers.

“I know it is important to be on social media, but I am afraid to put ourselves out there. We had a bad experience with a nasty reviewer online and we didn’t know how to respond. I know that bad reviews and disgruntled customers can hurt a brand. How do you suggest dealing with bad reviews on a Facebook page or on a Twitter feed or on a site like Yelp? Also, how do you decide where to be on social media. There are so many options and we only have so much time? – Denise”

Great question, Denise. You are right, just like your restaurant might see an uptick in business from a consistent stream of great reviews, bad online reviews can hurt your brand and your business. In today’s marketplace, an online reputation is something that every business must monitor.

First, we’ll address your question about how to deal with bad restaurant reviews. If you’re monitoring your restaurant’s online reputation, or you have an alert system set up and you come across a bad review, here are some steps you can take.

1st impression. Lasting imprint. 2 preventable brand mistakes.

By Karen Post on March 12, 2014

A new boutique hotel property, the Epicurean Hotel just opened in Tampa. Expectations were high since the veteran restaurant team behind the iconic Bern’s Steak House created this new culinary and hospitality experience, too.
The press materials and marketing content tout the new property as personifying a passion for food and wine and include the tagline “accommodations for the senses.” (Sidebar from restaurant branding roadmap: of all 5 senses, vision is the strongest sense, so what consumers see dominates first impressions – anything visual is 90% of the impact.)

Comprised of 137 guest rooms, the hotel features the following: a restaurant and wine bar, retail wine shop, bakery, full service spa, health club, swimming pool with cabanas, an open-air special-events area, rooftop lounge and a demonstration kitchen which will be home to the Bern Laxer School of Food and Wine. The hotel will join Marriott’s Autograph Collection®, a portfolio of independent luxury hotels.

For months, buzz has been building in the local and national news about this new foodie-centric, dining and hotel spot.

Make sure you check out our other articles.