State of the Union puts minimum wage, 30-hour work week, joint employer issues in the spotlight

It's been a busy week in Washington. From the State of the Union address to the Supreme Court to more on the minimum wage, here's a round-up of hot public policy topics for restaurants.

Why operators need to know about patent trolls

Patent trolls could cost restaurants money and slow innovation. Here's what operators need to know about patent trolls.

What do 26,710 PB&J sandwiches look like? Thanks to Which Wich, we now know

The thousands of sandwiches made during a 'Spreading Party' held at the Sheraton Dallas on Dec. 15 were donated to Dallas-area non-profit organizations.

How restaurants are using gamification to increase engagement in loyalty apps

Restaurants are discovering the power of leveraging apps, loyalty programs and games to engage customers and drive traffic.

Juice It Up! gears up for aggressive expansion under new VP

The California-based juice bar and smoothie concept hired its first-ever VP of Business Development in November, and Laina Sullivan is ready to take it nationwide.

New Year's resolution: Start the year with a great plan for your business

If you’re one of those people who have great intentions but lack follow through, writing a good business plan is the first major test of your commitment.

Is Zoës Kitchen poised for a breakout year?

Going public landed $42 million on the Mediterranean-inspired concept's balance sheet, and Zoës Kitchen is ready to put those dollars to work growing its footprint.

Pizza Inn Holdings Inc. hopes investors will RAVE about new name

Pizza Inn Holdings Inc., the parent company of Pie Five Pizza Co. and Pizza Inn, has announced that it is changing its name to RAVE Restaurant Group Inc., reflecting the company's transition to a multi-brand group.

Strong growth ahead in 2015, predicts the IFA, but threats are looming

While the economic forecast is strong, headwinds caused by the NRLB's joint employer ruling, minimum wage hikes and ACA implementation could curtail QSR franchise growth in 2015.

Building genuine customer engagement in an Instagram world

Instead of exhausting yourself trying to change customer behavior, take the necessary steps to minimize the distractions cell phones can present.

Tokyo Joe's rolling into New Year with first franchise deal

The Denver-based Asian concept is using "spoke and wheel" approach to accelerate its westward expansion.

Pond: Poised to make a splash in 2015

This could be the breakout year for Hunter Pond and his East Hampton Sandwich Co. The young entrepreneur's three-unit chain is set to double its footprint in 2015, and add another four units in 2016.

Adding kiosks? Read this first

POS kiosks can be essential tools in enabling customers to have a more pleasurable dining experience. But are there certain features restaurant owners and managers should examine when contemplating the addition of this technology?

How to choose the best rewards for your loyalty program

It's important to set the minimum purchase amount at a reasonable level so customers don’t get frustrated that they are never earning punches and thus feel like it’s not worth trying.

Executive round table: Fast casual segment leaders make their 2015 predictions

Local marketing, local sourcing, mobile technologies and customer service initiatives are all expected to move to the front burner in the New Year.

Rearview 2014: Mobile helps brands reduce friction, stay connected

Mobile technology helped brands reduce friction and connect with customers in 2014.

Debunking McDonald's service time criticism

Customers and investors prefer innovation and quality over short wait times.

Rearview 2014: Cause marketing moves from fundraising to partnerships

Cause marketing went to the next level in 2014, beyond raising awareness and funds for a cause to deep partnerships between restaurants and non-profits.

Is your restaurant green?

Even though going green may cost more than conventional items, consumers are willing to pay more for the opportunity; for them it is not an indulgence but a necessity.

Rearview 2014: Here's what we were hungry for

What did we want to nosh on in 2014? Not gluten. And maybe we're getting sick of pumpkin spice, too.

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