As someone who has always been proud of the opportunities our industry has provided to women and minorities, I have been disappointed by the small number of women I have seen at industry conferences, especially those with a high number of attendees from the fast-casual and quick-service segments.
What do Bic underwear, Harley-Davidson wine coolers, and Jamba Juice soup have in common? They’re all ways companies have tried to extend their brands—and they all failed.
It shouldn’t have been a surprise that the rough and manly image of the Harley brand wouldn’t fit with the light and girly product attributes of a wine cooler, but the fates of other brand extensions are harder to predict.
Starbucks announced that it will roll out its new in-store look focusing on the iconic Siren and a simultaneous global launch of handcrafted and artfully made beverage and food offerings in celebration of its 40th anniversary. Starbucks also introduced a company-wide commitment to community service as part of its ongoing mission to help create thriving neighborhoods.
Subway was the top quick serve in a recent study measuring consumer perceptions of the “simplicity” of various brands.
The Global Brand Simplicity Index from strategic branding firm Siegel+Gale gauged more than 6,000 consumers’ opinions of what brands made their lives simpler. In the U.S., five quick-serve brands cracked the top 10: Subway at No. 2, McDonald’s at No. 3, Dunkin’ Donuts at No. 4, Burger King at No. 5, and Starbucks at No. 9.
Netflix was the top overall brand in the U.S.
Starbucks announced that it is entering into an agreement with Courtesy Products, a provider of in-room coffee service to hotels, to provide Starbucks ground coffees for use in Courtesy’s patented CV1 in-room and on-demand brewed coffee system in up to 500,000 luxury and premium hotel rooms across the U.S.
Building on the popularity and momentum of the Starbucks VIA Ready Brew product line, Starbucks announced the availability of Starbucks VIA French Roast in all U.S. and Canada Starbucks stores beginning January 4. The introduction of the new instant coffee variety further reinforces Starbucks coffee leadership and its commitment to offering customers high-quality products at a good value.
Sitting on the edge of the U.S.-Canadian border and taking a backseat to another, more cosmopolitan, Empire State city, Buffalo, New York, often falls into the background. The city’s beloved NFL team plays the occasional home game in Toronto, its intense winters freeze out Niagara Falls–bound tourists, and the City of Good Neighbors’ meat-and-potatoes character doesn’t incite a barrage of flashy adjectives.
Continued Commodity Pressures
Many of the forces that caused the crazy commodity price increases several years ago are still at work: concerns about supply, rising energy costs, growing worldwide demand, and financial speculation through recently developed financial instruments. As most restaurateurs have neither the means nor knowledge to protect ourselves through contracting things out, we will continue to feel this inflationary pressure throughout 2011 and beyond.
Twenty- or 30-odd years ago, before society as a whole was fully attuned to the hazards—physical and moral—of allowing kids to eat pretty much whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted, product development was a relative snap.
Media measurement technology firm General Sentiment released its newest brand analysis, the Fall 2010 Fast Food Industry Report. The report highlights the brands that made the most significant media impact online between September and November. Despite declining nearly 20 percent since the summer, Starbucks still topped General Sentiment’s Impact Value rankings, more than doubling the totals of second and third place brands McDonald’s and Burger King.