Food Delivery Option is Now on Facebook

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Have you ever giving out “thumbs” for delicious food photography on social networking sites? Don’t you want to actually taste those delicious food? Now, a powerful data analysis social media, Facebook, has added food delivery option on its social networking site. Aiming to fill out the gap between social and utilitarian, utilizing the advanced target advertising strategy in food delivery market could be a huge step forward in the restaurant industry. Business can now market its brand image on social media and bring the food to the right foodie.

You can read more about this topic here.

Cornell Research Shows Restaurants are Profiting from Tabletop Ordering Technology

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Tabletop ordering technology is becoming more and more familiar to restaurant patrons nowadays. When considering the implementation of this technology, restaurant owners must consider the cost of equipment installation and its effect on future profits. According to a new study from the Center for Hospitality Research at Cornell University, the benefits of tabletop ordering technology significantly outweigh the cost. In the long run, tabletop ordering technology reduced servers’ labor time when meeting customers’ needs and ensured quality service. In other words, profits increased and labor costs fell.

You can read more about this topic here.

NYC Vegetarian Food Fest

Sarah Gross and Nira Paliwoda are the founders of U.S. Veg Corp, an event production and marketing brand focused on the growing vegetarian and green markets. U.S. Veg Corp provides offline and online opportunities throughout the year to target a passionate audience interested in a vegetarian and eco-friendly lifestyle. Nira and Sarah are active members of the local vegetarian and green movement. Their involvement with the community ensures that the events they put on address the latest issues concerning the vegetarian market and the most of-the-moment technologies.

The NYC Veg Food Fest will take place this year on March 14th & 15th from 11AM-6PM at The Metropolitan Pavilion on 125 West 18th St. Purchase your tickets now to attend and get yummy food samples, engage in fun activities and listen to inspiring speakers. For a list of this year’s exhibitors click here. Tickets for a 2-day pass are $50, while single day passes cost $30. To purchase tickets to the festival, click here.

 

Chobani Launching Food Incubator

Next Spring, Chobani founder and CEO Hamdi Ulukaya will be launching the brand’s first food incubator in New York City. The company has been doing very well with sales increasing from $3 million in revenues in 2007 to over $1 billion by 2012. The newly launched six-month program will be offering up office space and contacts with potential clients. Chobani will also be allocating up to $2 million in early-stage investment for the first group of about 10 companies. Ulakaya has had the idea to launch a food incubator for some time now, expressing that they, “have learned a lot about the space, about the food, and we’ve proved our model works. The founding mission we had was better food for more people–why does yogurt have to be exclusive?”

The program will be putting emphasis on branding, positioning and pricing. Chobani knows that these factors are crucial to food startups as they too have made important strategic decisions to get them to where they are now. Ulakaya will ensure that the startup’s products are tasty and affordable so as to appeal to mainstream consumers in the same way  Chobani’s products have. According to Ulakaya, “Some of the [issues with obtaining this food] is that it’s a lifestyle, but a majority of it is also availability, and if it is available, it’s not affordable. We can start from a better position and make it better as we go.”

There is a webpage where Chobani urges new entrepreneurs to apply and the class will be announced in the next few weeks. The entrepreneurs will have access to a host of resources such as marketing and distribution, and will be mentored directly by Ulakaya. To read more about the launch of Chobani’s first food incubator in New York City, click here

Increasing Speed of Service

Innovations in mobile payments lead to a more efficient and seamless experience which will increase restaurant traffic, however, as an operator you need to be equipped for the influx of guests and know how to keep a speedy service. Leaders from across the fast casual segment discussed solutions to drive the speed of service at the ninth annual Fast Casual Executive Summit held in Denver and came up with nine main solutions:

1) Adding a second line.  The addition of a second line that focuses solely on catering, online or mobile orders and carry out will help break up the line and lead to speedier service.

2)Encourage guests to break the line. Hand in hand with number 1, tweeting that online ordering lets you go in the second line will also help manage flow.

3)Choose adequate online software. Choose a software that knows to space out online orders to allow for increased efficiency.

4) Off-site phone orders. The advantage of moving phone orders from the cashier to a call center is that they can be handled as mobile orders socustomer data can be captured which opens up another segment for marketing.

To read more solutions and suggestions on how to increase the speed of service in the fast casual segment, click here

Marketing & Branding Live Webinar: Text Analytics

On October 21st at 2PM EDT a live webinar will be hosted by marketing and branding experts on Text Analytics 101: Watch Your Language. This webinar will stress the importance of words and especially those of your customers. It will show how important it is for your enterprise to be well equipped to a)listen and b)respond and act upon the messages customers are sending out about your enterprise.

The webinar event will show how successful brands use text analytics to participate in customer conversation and the key differentiators between different types of text analytics. The panel will also discuss what types of questions brands should be asking themselves before selecting a text analytics solution. Panelists include Kurt Williams, Chief Product Office of InMoment who brings over 15 years of experience in envisioning software products. Spencer Morris, VP of Text Analytics for InMoment directs the innovation and implementation of the industry-leading text analytics program.

To register for the event online and to learn more about what the webinar will reveal, click here

Chobani Connects with Customers in NYC

The Chobani location on the corner of Prince and West Broadway serves primarily as a test kitchen for the brand more so than it does as a major sales point. It is a perfect location to gain insight into what the young and trendy crowd in the neighborhood want and think of the brand’s creations. The savory menu items include plain yogurt with toppings such as red pepper harissa, olive oil, mint, and feta cheese to name a few, while the sweet dishes include toppings such as figs, honey and pistachios. All Chobani yogurt menu items range in price from $4.75 to $9.95.

The market research obtained from customers different tastes and preferences at this location have proven to be very valuable to the brand, so much so that they intend to open ten more similar outlets within the next year in San Francisco, LA, and Chicago amongst other U.S. cities. Peter McGuinness, Chobani’s chief marketing and brand officer states that the location is, “an inspiration and incubation center…we often have discussions with our guests at the cafe.” These conversations about the customers’ preferences have led to new menu items, such as the smoked-salmon sandwich made with mint and lane. McGuinness has observed that, “Everybody who leaves the cafe says they are more likely to buy our product at the grocery store.” So far sales at this Chobani cafe have increased 55% from last year.

Many dishes from this outlet are transitioning into supermarkets such as the pumpkin-spice yogurt, introduced as a seasonal flavor at the store; it has become Chobani’s fastest-selling item ever.To read more about how Chobani is connecting with their customers via a pseudo test kitchen in SoHo click here