FEATURES


Turning social media likes into restaurant traffic

Offer customers something, like a discount or a recipe, in return for their like.

The Starbucks mobile wallet: Will fantasy become reality?

Mobile Payments Today Editor Will Hernandez believes robust rewards could help such an initiative take off.

How Mystery Shopping can Supercharge Your Marketing and Training

By dramatically improving product quality and the customer experience, mystery shopping could be called the ultimate brand insurance.

Sponsored by: Sentry Marketing Group

Chipotle cites increased throughput as a driver behind same-store sales lift

Same-store sales drive strong second quarter results.

Check out Panera To Go

The store layout is dominated by ordering, order pick-up and wait-area seating.

Choosing the Right Potato Supplier for Fresh-Cut French Fries

Done correctly, few side dishes are better than fresh-cut french fries. Done poorly, they can be a guest turnoff.

Sponsored by: Kingston Fresh

6 steps to promote staff, customer allergen awareness

Have a disclaimer up in your restaurant that lets customers know the efforts made to accommodate diners with special dietary needs.

LevelUp's new StartUp program aimed at limited-service restaurants

Consumers don't become comfortable making mobile payments until their third transaction.

Pasta Patrol: Fazoli's takes brand door-to-door to reach seniors, families

Community marketing efforts help double visits from senior adults.

Are Millennials really that hard to please?

Exceeding expectations on food taste is the best way to assure a great experience across generations.

Why is the speakeasy bar concept growing internationally but not in the US?

Colombian-based Wingz's customers require an electronic key to gain access to its restaurants.

Holy jalapeno! How hot will menus get?

Sriracha, according to CCD Innovation, is in 2014 what chipotle was in 2009.

Fresh To Order CEO: Fast casual concepts need to 'elevate up'

Panos believes many brands in the segment are not delivering on true, fresh, made-from-scratch products.

How one restaurant concept leverages Yelp reviews for sales growth

Every star on a Yelp review leads to a 5 to 9-percent increase in revenue and First Watch uses the site as part of its business model.

Mobile CRM is a game changer that puts every restaurant on an even playing field

Heavy users of a brand do respond to rewards, but most customers prefer nuanced benefits, like special status as a VIP who gets access to private promotions.

Schlotzsky's cracks top five in app store restaurant category

Loyalty app is the centerpiece of Schlotzsky's effort to connect with Millennials.

How corn affects food prices

Corn prices were up 13 percent in the first six weeks of 2014 which will adversely affect the price of many of the foods you stock in your restaurant.

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NEWS


Back Yard Burgers sees turnaround with return of seasoned fries

Did bringing back seasoned fries save Back Yard Burgers? It might have been the start, according to a story in the Tennessean. The chain has enjoyed 15 straight months of same-store sales gains since bringing back seasoned fries and other...

Franchisors invited to meet with potential investors at Chicago event

Qualified franchise brands seeking to fuel their next level of growth have an opportunity to meet potential investors at the third annual Franchise Capital Exchange, to be held Aug. 25-27 at Hotel Sofitel in Chicago. A limited number of slots...

Buffalo Wings & Rings continues Middle East expansion

Buffalo Wings & Rings continues its expansion in the Middle East with the opening of its 9th location in Jordan. The restaurant chain has also opened the first of 12 planned locations in Saudi Arabia and signed its first area...

sweetFrog preps for New York Yankees Promotional Day

sweetFrog Premium Frozen Yogurt announced today that it will give away co-branded Yankees/sweetFrog sunglasses to the first 18,000 children at Promotional Day at Yankee Stadium on July 26. "The New York Yankees have created a tradition of excellence and family-friendly...

Rise Biscuits & Donuts launches worldwide franchise program

Rise Biscuits & Donuts recently announced the launch of its worldwide franchise program. Rise has partnered with Fransmart, the franchise development company behind brands like Five Guys Burgers and Fries and Qdoba Mexican Grill, as the exclusive franchise development partner....

Robeks unveils Philly food truck

Robeks fresh juices and smoothies franchise will debut the first food truck in the Philadelphia market. The rollout of the food truck marks Robeks' entry into Philadelphia and surrounding areas.

Robeks adds melon and mint to seasonal menu

Robeks fresh juices and smoothies is adding three new items featuring melon and mint to its seasonal menu. In many markets locally-grown fruits and produce will be used. "With these refreshing summer menu choices, we are keeping in step with our motto at Robeks — 'Healthy never tasted this good,'" CMO Chad Bailey said in a news release.

Corner Bakery Café partners with Altametrics

Corner Bakery Café announced the implementation of Altametrics' e*Restaurant and e*SmartClock systemwide beginning in August. "Our ability to adopt forward-thinking technology has put us in the position to more than double our national footprint by 2017. For that reason, we...

McAlister’s Deli secures $15 million for expansion

McAlister's Deli has secured $15 million in funding to drive its nationwide expansion plans. The funding comes from Benetrends. "McAlister’s continues to be recognized as a top fast casual concept with high-quality food and excellent service, and we consistently experience...

Kids LiveWell marks third anniversary with 150 restaurant brands

The National Restaurant Association’s Kids LiveWell program is celebrating its three-year anniversary this month. The voluntary program has grown from 19 to 150 participating restaurant brands in that time, representing more than 42,000 locations nationwide.

Villa Enterprises adds hibiscus, mango, pomegranate tea flavors

Villa Enterprises has added new flavored iced teas including hibiscus, mango and pomegranate at its restaurant concepts, Green Leaf’s and Bananas Smoothies & Frozen Yogurt, participating locations for a limited time. Also, Green Leaf’s & Bananas has kicked off a...

Coco’s Bakery launches menu redesign, new ingredients

Coco’s Bakery Restaurants Inc. has announced today a complete redesign and rollout of its new Core Menu, featuring new ingredients and never-frozen steaks. "Consumers, including our regular customers, are becoming more health conscious and seeking out more fresh and natural...

Tropical Smoothie Café commits $20 million for franchisee financing

Tropical Smoothie Café, with the backing of private equity firm BIP Capital, has launched a financing program to help existing franchisees open additional restaurants nationwide by providing up to $20 million in loans. The Franchisee Financing Program provides qualified existing...

Former Jimmy John's CEO launching location aware mobile ordering platform

Gregg Majewski, former CEO of Jimmy John's, announced today that he is launching Qmyfood, a mobile ordering platform which features location aware technology. According to a company press release, Qmyfood grew out of Majewski's frustration as a restaurant operator with...

Digital marketing provider secures $500K in capital for restaurant industry growth

Elevate Research Inc. announced today that it has secured $500,000 in seed capital to support its growth in the restaurant and retail industries.

Cypress Hospitality launches web-based restaurant management software

Cypress Hospitality has announced plans to release a web-based restaurant management software, FobeSoft, nationwide. Previously only available in the Jacksonville, Fla., market, FobeSoft enables operators to run their numbers in real-time and provides specific suggestions to increase profitability.

Jamba Juice's loyalty program hits 1 million

Jamba Juice's consumer loyalty program surpassed its 1 million member mark on July 17. The Jamba Insider Rewards loyalty program, which launched five months ago, was developed in partnership with Spendgo. Consumers take advantage of the loyalty program by entering their phone number into a terminal at the register.

Hai Street Kitchen & Co. launches Screaming Tuna Roll

Hai Street Kitchen & Co recently added the Screaming Tuna Roll to its menu. The Screaming Tuna Roll features raw, chopped Yellowfin Tuna mixed with kimchi, gochujang sauce and sesame oil rolled-up with pickled mango, lettuce, carrot, cucumber, red onion...

More consumers opting for takeout meals over hotel room service

Recent data from PFK Hospitality Research shows that hotel room service revenues fell 9.5 percent from 2007 to 2012, with some hotels discontinuing operations altogether. At the same time, takeout orders to hotels are growing exponentially, according to GrubHub Inc....

East Coast Wings & Grill offering buy six, get six promo

East Coast Wings & Grill will offer a special buy six wings, get six wings free deal on July 29 in recognition of National Chicken Wing Day. Customers can choose from bone-in or boneless wings. The offer is available to...

U.S. restaurant traffic remains stagnant with no tailwind in sight

U.S. consumers made approximately 61 billion visits to restaurants in the year ending May 2014, which is a stagnant number and remains below pre-Recession traffic levels by about 1.3 billion visits, according to new research from the NPD Group.

Jamba Juice gives away millionth beverage to Isis mobile wallet user

Jamba Juice announced that it recently gave away its millionth free beverage to an Isis mobile wallet user. Consumers who download the free Isis Mobile Wallet app on their smartphone could receive one small smoothie or 12 oz. juice per day at any participating U.S.

Capriotti’s debuts in Virginia

Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop will open its first restaurant in Virginia on Aug. 4.

Encore Restaurants purchases eight Five Guys units, plans to develop 45 more

Encore Restaurants LLC, a subsidiary of Dallas-based Encore Enterprises Inc., has announced the purchase of eight existing Five Guys Burgers and Fries restaurants across Central California including Elk Grove, Fresno, Lodi, Natomas, Roseville, Stockton, Tracy and West Sacramento. Encore Restaurants...

Corner Bakery rolls out bus tour fundraiser to fight child hunger

Corner Bakery Cafe is calling on educators to help kick off its summer-long fundraiser for Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign to end childhood hunger through a multi-city bus tour taking place this month. On July 23 in Chicago...

Togo's plans to give away 10,000 free sandwiches on July 24

Togo's Eateries Inc., announced plans to give away 10,000 #24 Turkey & Avocado sandwiches to celebrate 24 million #24s being sold, making the #24 one of Togo's best sellers. To get a coupon for a free regular #24, customers must "like" Togo's Facebook page and enter their email address. The coupon will be valid on July 24 only.

Genghis Grill launches new summer drinks

Genghis Grill announced the limited launch of three new summer drinks. Available at restaurants nationwide for $2.99 each, the new Strawberry Summer line features blends of tea, mango, lemonade and watermelon along with strawberries.  The drinks will only be available through Sept.

Dickey's opens new restaurants in Michigan and Colorado

Dickey's announced today the opening of two new restaurants, one in Ferndale, Mich., and one in Castle Rock, Colo. The Ferndale, Mich. store, located at 23123 Woodward Ave., will open July 24 at 11 a.m.

Chef Nick Graff joins Noodles & Company as director of Culinary R&D

Noodles & Company recently announced the appointment of Chef Nick Graff as director of Culinary Research and Development. Graff will oversee the development of the company’s in-restaurant menu, new catering program, seasonal limited time offerings and the selection of all...

AllergyEats conference planned for October in NYC

The 2014 AllergyEats Food Allergy Conference is set for Oct. 21 beginning at 8 a.m.

Restaurant recruiting firm launches regional development franchising program

Patrice & Associates, a nationwide recruiting firm specializing in the restaurant industry, has introduced a regional development franchising program. According to a news release, as part of the new program, regional developers will acquire the rights to develop 25 Patrice & Associates franchises within a specified territory.

Pollo Tropical offers Parent's Day deal

To celebrate National Parent’s Day, Pollo Tropical is offering $2 off any Create Your Family Meal on July 27.

Tava Indian Kitchen taps Smashburger exec as CEO

Tava Indian Kitchen today announced that Jeremy Morgan, former SVP of Marketing and Consumer Insights for Smashburger, has been appointed CEO. “I love the fact that Tava serves delicious Indian food in a fast casual environment," said Morgan in a...

Boston-area Bruegger's Bagels will offer burgers for a limited time

Bruegger’s Bagels will offer two free burgers available for a limited time at 21 of its Boston bakeries. The Bistro Burger is topped with cheddar cheese, secret sauce, lettuce, tomato and pickled onions on the guest’s choice of bagel. The...

Menchie's opens stores in Canada, Connecticut

Menchie's marked the opening of two stores recently, one in Canada and one in Connecticut. The Canadian store opened in Georgetown, Ontario, and marked the brand's 100th location in that market. “Canada has proven to be a strong and successful market for us and we see this growth continuing.

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